Top Leaderboard, Site wide
July 31, 2014
Truthdig: Drilling Beneath the Headlines
Help us grow by sharing
and liking Truthdig:
Sign up for Truthdig's Email NewsletterLike Truthdig on FacebookFollow Truthdig on TwitterSubscribe to Truthdig's RSS Feed

Newsletter

sign up to get updates


Hydropower Illuminates a Piece of History
Report Criticizes EPA Oversight of Injection Wells






Truthdig Bazaar
Act of Congress

Act of Congress

By Robert G. Kaiser
$20.84

Bad Money

Bad Money

By Kevin Phillips
$17.13

more items

 
Report

The False Debate on the Debt

Email this item Email    Print this item Print    Share this item... Share

Posted on Apr 13, 2011
AP / Charles Dharapak

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, left, and House Speaker John Boehner speak to reporters after their meeting at the White House with President Obama regarding the budget and possible government shutdown on April 6.

By Robert Scheer

In the ever-so-smug company of the rich and powerful, it is a given that there is never to be any expression of remorse or other acknowledgment of the pain they have inflicted on the lesser mortals they so cavalierly plunder. It’s convenient for them that the media and the politicians, which they happen to own, rarely connect the dots between the scams that made the rich so rich and the alarming rise in the federal debt that is crushing this nation.

The result of this purchased public myopia is that we are left with an absurd debate over how deeply to cut teachers’ pensions and seniors’ medical benefits while preserving tax breaks for the superrich and their large corporations. At a time when 10 million American families will have lost their homes by year’s end, when $5.6 trillion in home equity has been wiped out, when most Americans face steep unemployment rates and stagnant wages, a Democratic president is likely to compromise with Republican ideologues who insist that further cuts in taxes for the rich is the way to bring back jobs.

Let’s deal right off with that canard. There is currently no shortage of corporate profits or excessive executive compensation to explain away the failure of the private sector to create jobs. On the contrary, as The New York Times reports, “In the fourth quarter, profits at American businesses were up an astounding 29.2 percent, the fastest growth in more than 60 years. Collectively, American corporations logged profits at an annual rate of $1.678 trillion.” And to add insult to injury, the top executives, who seem unable or unwilling to create jobs or adequately reward their workers, have increased their own compensation by a whopping 12 percent over the previous year, setting the median pay at $9.6 million per year for those in control of the leading 200 companies. The Times adds that “C.E.O. pay is also on the rise again at companies like Capital One and Goldman Sachs, which survived the economic storm with the help of all of those taxpayer-financed bailouts.” 

Lost in this faux debate is the reality that our debt now looms so large because the government had to bail out many of those same corporations, quite a few of which, like General Electric and AIG, pay no taxes and have no problem paying truly obscene amounts to their top executives. GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt, whom President Barack Obama named chairman of the Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, is making as much as he did before the recession hit, a recession that his GE Capital division did much to cause with its reckless loans. AIG, saved with a government infusion of $170 billion, has just lavishly rewarded its top executives but has provided no relief for the homeowners ripped off by its phony credit default swaps.

The AIG deal was engineered by then-President of the New York Fed Timothy Geithner, who was rewarded for his efforts to save the bankers by being named Obama’s treasury secretary. Geithner, an energetic member of the team of Robert Rubin and Lawrence Summers that ran Treasury when the Bill Clinton administration cooperated with congressional Republicans in gutting regulation of the financial community, is proud of saving the banks from the wreckage that they and the Clinton policies caused. Last October he proclaimed the TARP banker bailout program “the most effective government program in recent memory.” 

Advertisement

Square, Site wide
What he is referring to is that in order to escape the federal restrictions on executive compensation, the banks have been eager to pay back the TARP funds. What he and other apologists for the Obama and George W. Bush administrations’ Bankers First program choose to ignore—as Paul Atkins and two other members of the Congressional Oversight Panel for the Troubled Asset Relief Program revealed in a damning Wall Street Journal column titled “TARP Was No Win for the Taxpayers”—is that the banks are not paying back the trillions of dollars in non-TARP governmental assistance that saved them from bankruptcy. “ … It hides the full story of the government’s financial crisis effort, of which TARP is but a minor part,” the Op-Ed column said of the maneuvering. The major part is the $1.1 trillion in toxic-mortgage-based securities that the Fed purchased, relieving the banks of their obligations, and the $380 billion bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, organizations that backed those securities, along with “other Fed and FDIC programs [that] added another $2 trillion of taxpayer money at risk to the 19 stress-tested banks alone. …”

What Geithner celebrates is a shell game of his own construction in which far more costly federal programs, with no serious restrictions on banker greed, were used by the banks to “repay” the TARP funds. Nothing was obtained in return from those banks in the way of mortgage cramdowns to keep people in their homes or any restrictions on the interest rates that banks charge on credit cards: Clearly usurious rates of more than 25 percent are now the norm for those struggling to keep their families above water. No wonder consumer confidence is down, the housing market is expected to decline an additional 10 percent over the next year, and the job market is predicted by most of the experts to stagnate for years to come. Continued tax breaks for the 1 percent of the population that controls 40 percent of the nation’s wealth will do nothing to restore the confidence of the other 99 percent of consumers who are suffering so.

This at least Obama seems to understand, but count on him to betray his own better instincts by once again following the advice of his treasury secretary and the Wall Street crowd that contributed so lavishly to his first presidential campaign and whose support he seeks once again.

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.



Get truth delivered to
your inbox every week.

Previous item: U.S.-Backed Bloodshed Stains Bahrain’s Arab Spring

Next item: At Last: A President, Not a Ref



New and Improved Comments

If you have trouble leaving a comment, review this help page. Still having problems? Let us know. If you find yourself moderated, take a moment to review our comment policy.

MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, April 20, 2011 at 9:00 pm Link to this comment

Sounds like OzarkMichael is one of Keith Olberman’s mice
that got hold of a moldy chunk of cheese.

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 20, 2011 at 8:52 pm Link to this comment

(paraphrased)

=====================
So why do poor working class conservative mice support the wealthy fat cats who are draining the wealth out of the nation…
Because they’ve been convinced, or they’ve convinced themselves that one day, they will become cats.

=====================

Thank you for that link MathaA - that was absolutely dead on target.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, April 20, 2011 at 7:39 pm Link to this comment

Martha/Thomas said: “Easily led genteel Conservative Republicans mice keep themselves in economic prison by joining with the Republican Corporate Elite cats…”

Easily led Leftists know that ‘change’ is needed. If the ‘change’ wont come becuase the voters are too stupid, they escalate and call their political opponents ‘terrorists’(to quote Gary Mont.. who defended himself by saying that he eats veggies!)  and if the Leftists still dont get their way it is only a matter of time before their hateful demonizing allows them to resort to this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=1nzsQ9ki6zI

If a speaker at a Tea Party rally said something like that, the MSM would be all over it and we conservatives would rightfully have our noses rubbed in it. But hey, its a Leftist and it doesnt fit the nice narrative that the MSM promotes about the Left, so it isnt news at all.

Unfortunately for the Left, we have freedom on the internet to expose what easily-led-Leftists are saying. Good luck ‘wresting control’ from the small independent sources which have sprung up all over, Gary Mont!

Who wants the government to start regulating the airwaves? And the internet? To tell us who can speak and who cannot speak? To decide when we can speak?

Not me. Never.

Search yourselves. Is it you?

Report this
MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, April 20, 2011 at 4:40 pm Link to this comment

Easily led genteel Conservative Republicans mice keep themselves in
economic prison by joining with the Republican Corporate Elite cats
that divides the democratic majority population as is clearly spelled
out here by Keith Olberman:

http://www.readersupportednews.org/off-site-opinion-section/72-72/5684-the-first-guess-lotto-nation

Report this
Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, April 20, 2011 at 4:17 pm Link to this comment

The fact Martha noticed….  even half of the satire is surprising revelation to me!

Report this
Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, April 20, 2011 at 11:42 am Link to this comment

Not many people know this and probably more people would not care, ...... Adolf Hitler just had his 122 birthday and some people actually celibate it.

Only in Chicago, ... about 60 people gathered at a Restaurant to party for Hitler’s “birthday”.  It seems they where also celebrating the start of the Civil War, it is not known, if party goers know Hitler was not in the Civil war? 

According to observations from passer byes, ....the room was decorated with swastikas, and banners and there were two cakes which were decorated with the words “Happy 122ed Birthday Adolf” and the other cake said “The South Was Right. White Men Fight.”, apparently they did not know how many years it has been since the Civil War,.... which explains a few things!

Party goers did not wear costumes depicting either Nazis or the Civil war, but there seemed to be a large number of people wearing tea bags and one person was reported to be riding a straw-man, with tea bags hanging from its ears….. this seemed be a cause of concern for many of the party goers,..... because they suggested it sort of looked gay?

Police Chief Harry Toad, told reporters that a man with a backpack entered the banquet hall and ordered a shot of Tequila and a vegan sandwich with roast beef, with extra cranberry sauce,..... before heading into the men’s room to set off a smoke bomb. 

Harry Toad said the officers do not have a clear description of the man who threw the smoke bomb, except that he was medium height with ruddy complexion,  had a peg leg, a patch over one eye and a hook for one hand.  Police are asking for any information leading to the whereabouts of this man!

Owner of the restaurant, Dusty Bucket,....  said;  he was not aware that the banquet space was rented for Hitler and he had never noticed the Swastikas!

Report this
MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, April 20, 2011 at 2:23 am Link to this comment

Gary Mont, April 20 at 2:08 am,

I agree with you and enjoyed the satire in your post.

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, April 20, 2011 at 1:23 am Link to this comment

Gary Mont, the feeling is mutual.

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 20, 2011 at 1:03 am Link to this comment

To Shenonymous,

Thank you for clearing that up. I had wondered if you were another bunker posing as an interested party, but decided, as always, to give you the benefit of the doubt.

Your purposeful re-ordering and mis-representation of my words tells me all I needed to know however.

Thank you for reducing my daily reading material.

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, April 20, 2011 at 12:48 am Link to this comment

Gary Mont, April 20 2:08am-”Your message appears to be “Wait
and watch, because spontaneous good-guys and new technology
will save us.””
  Is that what I said?  It looks like you weren’t able
to fathom much of what I said, and here I thought I spoke plain
Engrish.  Oh well. 

I wasn’t really advocating that you buy any webbie devices, or that
some good-guy savior would spontaneously emerge.  I suggested
that you be on the lookout for at least one in spite of not thinking
one ever would. You seem so estranged from your current culture
that even the anti-depressant drugs ads are your favorites.  Amazing. 
Perhaps you are saying you yourself need them?  For instance, my
favorite commercial is the one about a society of wild animals, who
normally would be attempting to eat others or trying to escape
predators, at an African watering hole getting along without attacking
each other.  I don’t even remember what corporation is trying to sell its
nonaggressive, unthreatening, or peaceful, and harmonious product.  I
only see that the animals, most probably CGI, live as humans ought to,
no doubt the intention of the imaginative allegory, were they are less
hostile to one another and towards the world they live in. 

The fact that you do not watch TV or have a cell phone is most
profoundly your choice and for whatever anti-social reason is also your
decision.  Perhaps you do not have anyone you wish to communicate
with except for this artificial environment of computerized blogs? I
admit that is only an uninformed guess on my part, going only on your
own admittance.

Obviously I agree to the nth degree with you that commercials are a
disgusting waste of technology, but that is not the call of either of us. 
Our best resort is to not buy their product.  Or not be exposed at all
eschewing delivery of all else that is offered on television. Personally I
find much of interest and informing on television on non-commercial
TV.  The other stuff on commercial TV is in my opinion worthless. 

But that is not the essence of what I had to say.  Your fascination with
your dog’s turds more than discussing the dearth of honest politicians
is a hoot.  And the lack of honest politicians is in my mind much more
important to ponder than the defecation of a dog.  And, ironically, you
capitulate that waiting is all we can do at the end of the day.  And as
far as this civilization ending up on an archaeologist’s heap of bones
and stones, well it will indubitably but no reason not to make the best
of it whilst we live.  While I am a skeptic and a cynic about a lot of
things I cannot say I think life is so dismal that I am utterly negative
about it.  There are people I love and who love me in it that has made
living worthwhile. I do not know that there is any special reason save
accident that humans evolved or that there is any huge overarching
design for the universe, which I do not think there is but that does not
matter so much, and even if there isn’t, the sobering realization is that
I am here.  Withdrawing from the world is surely one way to deny it, but
engaging in it with some positive action, to be a positive agent rather
than the victim of circumstances, I believe to be the healthiest way to
accept one’s life, if not downright courageous.  Otherwise, suicide is an
answer.  I do not choose the latter but I do wholeheartedly choose the
former.  I’ve been able to find much beauty in this world besides the
horribly ugly and grotesque; ah yes, a fixation on the aesthetic as one I
know would inconsequentially accuse of me.  I’m glad I was born to
experience it.
It sounds like you have never had that kind of contact with and no kind
observation of the world.  For that I offer my condolences.

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 19, 2011 at 10:08 pm Link to this comment

Shenonymous:You seem to have an uncomplicated answer, and basically I agree with you but I think I have a less pessimistic view.

Your message appears to be “Wait and watch, because spontaneous good-guys and new technology will save us.”

I wish.

I like technology, although not nearly enough to wait in line for this week’s newest cell phone or webby device. In fact I’ve never owned a cell phone and doubt very much I ever will.

I stopped watching TV years ago, as it became obvious that the news and information shows were almost totally corporate-safe misinformation, and that all important events were simply not covered at all. I was never fond of sit-coms and the like so it was no hardship losing the TV.

The little of it I do see - others here watch the thing religiously and I sometimes sit through a few dozen commercials and a few minutes of some show while brewing a tea - is amazingly sad.

Its mostly commercials for the mafia run pharmeco drugs that have so many side-effects they are far worse than the ailment they pretend to “cure”.

My favourites are the anti-depression drugs that cause; as a side effect, a desire to commit suicide. Now that’s a real designer drug for you.

Most of the other commercials are skits about one person lying to another person for whatever reason. Its a truly disgusting waste of an excellent technology.

As far as waiting for an honest politician to spontaneously occur, I think there’s a better chance that my dog will start crapping quarters. Last time I looked it was still just turds - and that can be said of both my dogs current droppings and the current selection of politicians.

The web news networks had a chance when the web was young, but there are serious plans in the works right now to absolutely end anything resembling freedom on this lovely technology, so their days, and ours for that matter, are numbered.

All in all, I think waiting is exactly what we’re actually going to end up doing and that is why I’m so utterly negative and pessimistic about this civilization’s chances of not becoming another pile of broken pillars and buried garbage for future archeologists to ponder over.

Report this
Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, April 19, 2011 at 9:51 pm Link to this comment

The cicadia the scarecrow and his strawman!

Well after getting past the first sentence of OMmmmms tall…...you know…. strawmen tails!  For some unexplainable reason,..... Britts number 3 has come to me mind, so here it is number 3 of “Britts 14 points on Fascisim”;

“3.  Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause. People are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial, ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists, etc.

Britts Number 3 dove tails quite nicely with the events of the day,  I would expand why this seems to be,......  but most of the people here in cicada land are able to connect the dots,......mean while back in righty tighty land, OM (reading your mind again OM)  has trouble reading past his sidekick ....stawman!

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, April 19, 2011 at 9:15 pm Link to this comment

Gary Mont, April 19 6:35am-You seem to have an uncomplicated
answer, and basically I agree with you but I think I have a less
pessimistic view.  It does not look like the old guard media
will fail financially at least not in the near future. They have too
many corporate advertisers that pay their bills, that paints a benign
corporate world. Just watch the well-crafted ads that incessantly
inundate the airwaves.  Just take a look at the ads that are in the
margins of Truthdig forums. My favorite liberal news opinionists like
Maddow, O’Donnell, Schultz are interrupted a gazillion times for ads,
to the point that they get to say four words then cuts to a run of six
ads.  I am so annoyed that I’ve started counting them and sending in
my complaints to their news channel headquarters.  Do I think it phases
them in any way?  NO!  But I feel better voicing my displeasure.

A TV ad is not cheap, so the billions of dollars being spent on male
enhancement drugs, status cars, and the competitively best bank to
bank with that “cares” about its depositors, oh yeah, apparently is
getting a healthy return on their ad investment and hence, is not going
to go away. But, and I say that qualifyingly, you are also onto some-
thing when you mention the web news networks.  In spite of your lost
hope and thinking America is stuck in the ashes of unstimulated
thought, I have optimism that it is inexorable that the public will be
better informed exponentially, meaning as they become electronically
briefed, they will become better and better informed.  As more and
more individuals acquire the small electronic communications products
and have access to what is happening in the world sans reporters
because people all over the world have now become the eyes and ears
of what is happening, tweet, facebook, email, and real time view and
talk, it will greatly impact the need to watch the big-bucks news and
news editorial programs.  The “word” now spreads like wildfire, which is
what happened in the Egyptian peaceful rebellion.  That is our paradigm
but it is not yet the rule, but it will be I am convinced.  The more this
e-media is used the more it will be used and the more it will relegate
the old guard, or traditional way of informing the public to history. 
That is how the people themselves will change the world.  News about
misinformation will be disseminated within minutes if not seconds. 
There will be a panic for the misinformers to retract or correct what
they say. 

But it will not be overnight, but it will seem like overnight when we
wake up and see it is happening.

The history of the fall of civilizations and their ruination is detectably
cyclic.  First a rise then a fall.  Greece is a favorite example, their rise,
the Hellenics, where intelligence and bloom of their culture that
descended into the Hellenistics, the corrupt and emotion driven.  The
Renaissance devolved into the Baroque, from height to depth of human
achievement.  The question is can America avoid this descent?  It looks
like we are on the downslide.  But it is not the first time and America
has always sprung back.  With our consciousness and immediacy of
communication, is it possible rectification is just a demagogic Sophist
away?  Or just as possible a real faithful-to-the-people leader will rise
up from the ashes?  We must keep our eyes pealed for that has been
my perennial question to complainers, find the leader(s) out of the hell
the present politicians have created.  Anarchists’ untenable
psychological mirage would say we need no leaders!  A couple of names
have been suggested but they have deep rooted political warts.  Nader
has never appealed to enough people to get elected for anything.  He
has been too self-absorbed.  Ron Paul has a nasty attitude towards
women’s right to their own bodies.

Report this
Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, April 19, 2011 at 3:16 pm Link to this comment

OM,..... are you saying the unwashed masses need to invest in a bar of soap and take a shower? What then what would happen to Ommmm;s sidekick the straw man?

Thanks for telling me what I think and what all liberals think and actually showing us what righttus unthought is like!

OM, ....why don’t you let it all out and say what you really mean, I can put words in your mouth too, OM!.....You know this?...Or maybe you don’t?

What OM really means is:

GET OUT OF AMERICA,

YOU ANTI-AMERICAN, NO GOOD, SCUM SUCKER!!!

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, April 19, 2011 at 2:52 pm Link to this comment

Which one of us really despises the ‘unwashed masses’? Is it really me? Although that is repeated constantly here until it builds into a buzzy cicada chorus, that doesnt make it true.

Take Leefeller for example: “Money seems to enjoy the privilege of paying for manipulations whether, divisive or mischievous, in the end the political will of the unwashed masses is always choreographed to the beck and call of manipulative few!”

Although he considers himself to be on the side of the ‘little guy’, in fact he thinks they are stupid and easily manipulated.

Although Leefeller thinks that he supports the little guy, in fact he needs their will to be thwarted. He needs to change them, because too many of them like talk radio, conservative web sites, Fox News. Too many of them have the wrong opinion and that is the problem. Gary Mont’s motto about ‘wresting control’ really is code for “people are too stupid to know what is good for them’ so we have to force some changes in the media”

The Left dispises the ‘unwashed masses’, who they think are too weak to think for themselves. The ‘unwashed masses’ need to be forced to stop listening to bad influences like Fox news. The unwashed massess cannot think for themselves, or as the communist(Lenin?) said, “The proletariat is shit!”

The cicadas want freedom… for themselves only. Chains for everyone else who are too stupid to use freedom for the correct cause. 

That is the division of humanity into the free(yourselves) and the Other(unwashed masses, rich, or whatever you want to buzz about).

That is your solidarity with the ‘majority’. That is your freedom for them? Hypocrites!

Your solicitous tears for America, Gary Mont, shed by your sad little Left Eye, mean nothing to me. Even the poorest should throw your tears and your desire for a dialogue back in your face, because they should not accept second class status for themselves. Not at any price.

For myself I do not accept second class status. Not for them either. Not for anyone. Not even for the cicadas, although with my words i throw your chains aside and tie you to them. Maybe you will learn something.

Any discussion about solving problems that has as its foundation a division of humanity never gets off the ground, never gets past the first sentence. That is too high a price to pay even if it did solve problems, and such methods do not solve problems anyway.

And if that means I am in a bunker, never getting past the first sentence, then so be it.

Report this
Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, April 19, 2011 at 10:57 am Link to this comment

Unwashed Cynical Cicada Opinion!

Good news for the two party system, .....they are still the two party system….... The Tea Bags have been a slight bought and paid for….. speed bump in the road to no where or better yet, a regressive time warped trail to the 1850s.

Opportunists saw the timing and need to manipulate a seething part of the unwashed,...... so they propped up Palin and now Bochman and created the Tea Bags,.... this seems what moneyed interests do,....... actually what ever they want!

I suspect like all causes, the Tea Bags are yet one more cause which may have started with noble intentions for the participants, but far as I can tell the Tea Bags are on their way to being once more, what ever their benefactors wanted them to be.

Money seems to enjoy the privilege of paying for manipulations whether, divisive or mischievous, in the end the political will of the unwashed masses is always choreographed to the beck and call of manipulative few!

Lets face it, the tea bags have become the Republicans…. ‘blame boys’,.. so we hear the Republicans and the media touting, .....Republicans must do what the Tea Bags want, (sounds like Republican accountability to me)  .... so the top one percent and their cronies once again another episode of hidden few behind those curtains pulling the strings,...  and lets face it, ..... a two party system is so much easier for those full time string pullers!

Report this
drbhelthi's avatar

By drbhelthi, April 19, 2011 at 5:52 am Link to this comment

“I have no idea how an occupied nation could regain control of its
stolen media from an invader the nation does not even know exists.” 
Gary Mont

Agreed.
How sadly accurate.

Articles such as “Dispatches From Cairo: Keeping Up With Egypt”, and
similar hegemonious fairy tales support the approx. forty-years-old,
US-media practice of “dumbing down” the American public.  As though
the one-world globalists will permit an exception to their plan to
overtake the Mid-East to the borders of China and Russia. As though
Egypt will be a “peace and goodwill project” exception to their plan.

How many people who read Truthdig are aware that Werner von Braun and
Hubertus Strughold were WWII NAZI war criminals who should have been
tried with their colleagues at the Nuremberg War Trials? Strughold,
an MD who murdered Jewish and other prisoners in Dachau via his
stupid experiments that served no scientific purpose, yet he was
elevated to Chief of Space Medicine for NASA?

And the superficial trial of a WWII corporal in the NAZI SS, now
approaching 90, by the States Attorney in Munich, Germany?  When
forty years ago, they could have tried the officers who gave him the
order?  One wonders if the GHWBushSr entourage requested them to
engage in the hypocrisy to distract from their takeover of the Mid-
East and the genocide of Moslems?  Which raises the question of
historical background of leadership in the Office of the States
Attorney in Bavaria - . 

Americans are not even aware of the NAZI background of the George
H.W. Bush Sr. family.  Nor their ties with B.H. Obama. And some
Americans do not comprehend Obama´s constant flip-flops?

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 19, 2011 at 2:35 am Link to this comment

Shenonymous:Do you have a plan Gary Mont to commandeer the media?

No. I have no idea how an occupied nation could regain control of its stolen media from an invader the nation does not even know exists.

I only know it has to be done before any other action can even hope to be successful.

I think the old guard media will have to fail financially and collapse completely before it can be rebuilt from the ground up.

I had hoped that the web news networks could replace the old guard compromised networks, but its impossible to avoid the powerful combination punch of government threat of license revocation for non-compliance and corporate bribes for playing the game by the script.

As I said before, I do not know how America can pull its ashes out of the fire and hope only to stimulate thinking in that direction, in hopes of extrapolating something coherent from the chatter.

I look around at the dozens of ruins of civilizations preceding this one and see that this is how it awlays ends. Not by disease, or war, or famine, but by the unbridled greed of the wealthy turning on the very people who created their wealth, and in a mad orgy of gluttony, destroying the entire civilization in an attempt to become gods on earth.

Since humanity is better educated than ever before in history, I hold hope that something can be done to prevent the inevitable, but I have no idea what that might be and the hope is very, very small.

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, April 19, 2011 at 1:26 am Link to this comment

This country already has a multi party political system.  Besides the
two major parties:  Democratic Party and Republican Party, and more
than 55 other active parties in the United States. Third-parties offer
alternatives for those who think they are disenfranchised by the two
most visible political institutions:  Some of these are:
American Party
American Independent Party
Boston Tea Party
Constitution Party
Green Party
Libertarian Party
New American Independent Party
Objectivist Party
party for Socialism and Liberation
Prohibition Party
Reform Party of the United States of America
Socialist Party of the United States of America
America First Party
Independence Party of America
Moderate Party
Peace and Freedom Party
Socialist Equality Party
United States Marijuana Party
Unity Party of America
Workers World Party
Working Families Party

But a comprehensive list is found at:
http://www.votesmart.org/resource_political_resources.php?category=1
with addresses and phone numbers.

Do you have a plan Gary Mont to commandeer the media?  There is the
American Free Press, http://www.americanfreepress.net/

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 19, 2011 at 12:48 am Link to this comment

MarthaA:We must strive for having a multi party political system in the United States with all political parties equal…

I cannot imagine any action being effective until you take back the media from corporate control. It has been long known that the first thing an invader needs to take control of is the victim’s media.

As long as the media lies and disseminates only corporate-safe information, it doesn’t really matter how many or what type of political parties are present to participate. An anti-corporate politician stands no chance of success when the media can spew false information about them with impunity.

No free press, no freedom present.

Report this
MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, April 18, 2011 at 11:46 pm Link to this comment

Gary Mont, April 19 at 1:36 am,

Using om as a launch pad is beneficial and totally against his purpose on this forum.

Thanks for those anonymous posts.

Also,  chip thanks for the Nader info.  I
have always known Nader would be a good
president. 

We must strive for having a multi party political system in the
United States with all political parties equal, so that each party will
be able to be heard, instead of forced out of political dialog with
the public, completely, before elections;  and if per chance they do
win, like VT Sen. Bernie Sanders, being ruled by their choice of
either the Democratic Party’s agenda or the Republican Party’s
agenda that they don’t agree with.

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, April 18, 2011 at 11:30 pm Link to this comment

JohnnyBeagle, April 17 7:32 pm Yes, it has been a two steps forward
one step back cotillion.  But it has looked like three steps backward
which means a minus a step.  At least it feels that way.  You are a
kind man and have more “faith” than I do at this point.  But I am
willing to wait and see, since we have to anyway, to see what he
accomplishes and does in the final analysis.

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 18, 2011 at 11:05 pm Link to this comment

Leefeller:Gary Mont, several of us posters discussed Anonymous on another thread and if I recall they promoted a good concept, but turned out ineffective on one of their earlier past protests? They have something going on in June?

I’ve been fascinated by them since the Wikileaks fiasco broke, (when I first heard of them,) but I think that while their hearts and minds may indeed be on the right channel, their medium may soon disappear.

The web is destined to be “commercialized” and “militarised” by the ruling corporations who are eternally fearful of any and all information that they cannot first edit, or when necessary, destroy.

The only thing that has stayed the corporatist hand so far is their own use of the web for profit. Once they have full control of all content, groups like Anonymous may be rendered impotent, or allowed to enter only so that they can be hunted down via military web weapons and arrested or eliminated by accidental execution.

Regardless, the list of demands/changes is extremely well thought out and includes nearly everything that must be done to restore America to some semblance of sanity as a nation, so I thought the posting should be duplicated here.

I only wish I had been paying attention when I ran across it and had copied the site address on which it was found. A simple URL would have been so much nicer than posting the whole thing.

I was “Stumbling” and it was after 4AM and I wanted a copy of the post for my archives, so my apologies to all for posting the whole thing here.

Report this
Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, April 18, 2011 at 10:31 pm Link to this comment

Gary Mont, several of us posters discussed Anonymous on another thread and if I recall they promoted a good concept, but turned out ineffective on one of their earlier past protests? They have something going on in June?

OM, you and your sidekick straw man riding tall in your saddles of absolutism and certainty with fast talking mind numbing abilities of what other people are thinking, but unable to ride past Sheers cattle guard (or should I say Tag Bag guard ) sentence, I have ....as usual completely lost interest with you and straw-mans lame one sentence conversation.

Sincerely buzz Cicada Leefeller!

Report this

By chip, April 18, 2011 at 10:00 pm Link to this comment

Hey Litl Bludot,

Nobody deserves the presidency more than Nader.
When the press mentions that traffic fatality’s are down they can’t even mention it’s because of airbags.
That might lead to who got them for us.

Nader scares the hell out of them.
He’s unimpeachable.

People are surviving “head on” wrecks now.
Unheard of before Nader bags.

I got a movie called “a unreasonable man” about Ralph.
I learned a lot from it.

I have a clip from c-span with Nader And Ron Paul on
9-10-08 saying.
Bring all our troops home now, including Iraq,Korea,Japan,Europe, and the entire middle east.
We must stop the war propaganda, threats of a blockade and plans for an attack on Iran.
We should not re-ignite the cold war over Georgia.
We must have a willingness to talk to all country’s and offer friendship and trade and travel to all who are willing.
We must take off the table the threat of a nuclear first strike against all nations.
We must insist on protecting the privacy and civil liberty’s of all people that are under U.S. jurisdiction.
We must repeal or radically change the patriot act, the military commissions act and the F.I.S.A. legislation. We must reject the notion of torture,  elimination of habius corpus, secret tribunals and secret prisons.
We must insist on no immunity for corporations that spy willingly on the people for the benefit of the government.
We must reject the unitary president, the illegal use of signing statements and excessive use of executive orders.
We believe there should be no increase in the national debt. The burden of debt placed on the next generation is unjust and already threatening our economy and the value of our dollar. We must pay our bills as we go along and not unfairly place this burden on a future generation.
We insist that there be a thorough investigation, evaluation and audit of the federal reserve system and its cozy relationship with the banking corporate financial institution. The arbitrary power to create money and credit out of thin air behind closed doors for the benefit of special interests must be brought to an end. There should be no bailouts of corporations and no corporate subsidy’s. Corporations should be aggressively prosecuted for crimes and fraud”.

I wish I knew how to put a link to this.
It should be in C-Span archives. Taped on 9-10-08
hosted by the national press club titled “third party candidates” Cynthia McKinney was there too
and some nut named Chuck Baldwin.

I guess Ron Paul is pro life but not fanatical about it.

They all agreed to the above statement.

Maybe a Paul, Nader ticket?

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 18, 2011 at 9:48 pm Link to this comment

Part Two

To effectively   reform the system   that has   enslaved us,  we   must   consider following the advice and example of those who have preceded us:  Thomas Jefferson, Andrew Jackson, Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, and JFK are good places to start. All took fierce positions against central banking, government corruption and corporate power.
The time has come for us to unite, the time has come for us to stand up and fight!

  You are Anonymous!

We are in the information era.

We are Anonymous,

We are Legion,

We do not forget,

We do not forgive,

Expect us.

  A   starting   point for reform   could be established   by   citing   a list of   worthy   objectives   provided   by ampedstatus.com.
  Grievances and Demands:

Enforce RICO Laws

Break Up the Big Banks

End the Fed

Break Up the Mainstream Media / encourage citizen journalists

Shut the Revolving Door

End Closed Door Lobbying

Increase Government Transparency

End Corporate Personhood

Amend Campaign Finance

Verify All Votes

Investigate War Profiteers

Investigate War Crimes

End the Wars

Restore Civil Liberties

Uphold the Constitution

Clean Air, Water & Food

Reduce Healthcare Costs, Profiteering

Make Healthcare a Human Right

Improve Education For All, Reduce Costs

Reform Prison System

Reform drug laws

Stop spending so much money on drugs! NYC spent $75million alone on marijuana arrests.

Immigration Reform

Rebuild Infrastructure

Protect Internet Freedom

Empower States’ Rights

End Corporate Welfare

Fair taxes for everyone!

Enforce corporate responsibility

Force corporations to apply local labor laws in their global operations

Strengthen environmental laws and force corporations to clean up their act

Work for a real separation of church and state – and a real split between corp and state?

Reinstate Habeus Corpus

Allow felons who have paid their debt to restore voting rights

Stop prison labor from competing with local businesses
Additional objectives

End lifetime appointments to the SCOTUS

Abolish the “Patriot Act”

Abolish the lobbying system (no paid lobbyists)

Close Guantánamo

Establish and define “financial terrorism” as a treasonous act and prosecute offenders vigorously

Enshrine gender equality in the constitution

End corporate money in the election process

“Reduce non-emergency military funding”


==================

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 18, 2011 at 9:47 pm Link to this comment

I found this on another site and hope my posting it here will not be construed as a breech of copyright, as I feel it should indeed be spread far and wide for maximum exposure.

Part one.


Dear US Citizens,

We, Anonymous, would like to offer you, America, the opportunity to join and support our movement. We are a group that formed on the internet–one that knows no constructs or absolutes, and one that has recently grown exponentially.  We would like to introduce an operation. An operation that involves Americans getting our Natural Rights and dreams back. Right now, you can help by passing on the information. Information is power. Share the power of the information with other like-minded individuals. The more people we represent, the more power we have, both as individuals and as Anonymous. Thank you for your time and your power.

-Anonymous
CITIZENS OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Many events have taken shape over the course of only a few years, and slowly our system has been working towards the gains of itself rather than the gains of its people.  While we all have watched and rallied against the system working against us, there have been other gains of the system that have gone without a peep as backroom deals and bargaining allow for the passing of legislation and research funding that has resulted in a loss of more liberties such as censorship, phone and internet surveillance,  and eminent domain laws not to mention higher taxes, lower wages, and loss of work due to exports deals. We repeat the history of our mistakes instead of evolving our society. Generations in the past spoke of what we face as current issues, the only difference being that of our technological advancements. We have forgotten such words our society has found guidance and value in:

  We Hold These Truths To Be Self Evident.

  That All Men Are Created Equal, That They Are Endowed By Their Creator With Certain Unalienable Rights, That Among These Are Life, Liberty, And The Pursuit of Happiness.

  That To Secure These Rights, Governments Are Instituted Among Men, Deriving Their Just Powers From The Consent Of The Governed.

  That When Any Form of Government Becomes Destructive of These Ends, It Is The Right Of The People To Alter Or To Abolish It, And To Institute New Government Laying Its Foundation On Such Principles And Organizing Its Powers In Such Form, As To Them Shall Seem Most Likely To Affect Their Safety and Happiness.

“In the past few months, Anonymous has made headlines through the actions of a few. The media tries to instill fear of which Anonymous is as a “group”, and in the process failed to recognize it as an “ideal” that is gaining momentum.
Anonymous is an ideal that the people can use to further help other people. In this case, you’re not being heard and transparency in government operations is non-existent in many matters. Mobilize yourself to find your information, and we’ll be giving you resources to further help you.  Take the information you find and tell your government your demands.

We want AMERICANS to wake up!

We want AMERICANS to read!

We want AMERICANS to think, and above all question all things!

We want AMERICANS to analyze, criticize, critique and learn to read between   the   lines,  to expose   and   to   deconstruct!

We   want   you   to   believe   in   the   infinite   power of   the people! We want you to learn that we’re all truly brothers and sisters in humanity regardless of all the artificial barriers that have been set up to separate us!

  “Think For Yourself, Question Authority” – Timothy Leary

  Inform.
  Educate.
  Guide.
  Evolve.
  Wake up the People.

The time for the next step in our species’ social evolution has come!

———————-

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 18, 2011 at 9:36 pm Link to this comment

MarthaA:Gary Mont, om has only won in his own mind, that is his subjective perspective and the same perspective that is projected off onto others.

Actually, IMO, the battle went flawlessly.

Understanding MO’s M.O. fully now, I no longer need to read any future postings under that handle. That removes a large portion of utterly wasted time from my daily reading.

For this, I’m thankful, which is why I concede the point. I don’t collect points anyway.

Bunkers have been around since the time of the Bulletin Board Systems, unchanged, and their effect is always disruption and dis-information, whether they do it for attention or pay.

Knowing in advance that nothing I could ever write will ever have any effect on the thinking of such creatures and that any correspondence I might have with them will elicit nothing of value, I feel absolutely no need to entertain the bunker at all. 

However, I was more than willing to use his bafflegab as a launch-pad to explain my own position on violent protest and why I do not advocate it, or believe it can be effective as a means of restoring sanity to the nation in the current situation - that it would play directly into the hands of the Terrorists currently holding public office and their corporate masters.

Report this
MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, April 18, 2011 at 9:14 pm Link to this comment

Gary Mont,

om has only won in his own mind, that is his subjective perspective
and the same perspective that is projected off onto others.

Report this
MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, April 18, 2011 at 9:04 pm Link to this comment

Don Levit, April 18 at 1:36 am,

It all gets down to the full faith and credit of the U.S. Government
and whether or not it really stands for anything.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, April 18, 2011 at 8:25 pm Link to this comment

GaryMont says that I: “misconstrued the last portion of the sentence making it appear as though I advocate “dismantling the society from within”, when it was clearly stated as being the active agenda of “the domestic terrorists now holding office”

It wasnt that clear. But I take your word for it that i got that part wrong. Instead of wanting to dismantle society, you are accusing others of dismantling society. Instead of a sociopath you are a conspiracy theorist.

But a conspiracy theorist is not so bad as a sociopath. Not by a long shot. I apologize for my error.

“And of course they can always simply say, Oh it was just a misunderstanding.”

Part of it was. But you still own the hypocritical “wresting America out of the hands of domestic terrorists” motto, and yes I do enjoy it when i successfully expose the Leftist double standard. For that i dont apologize and i do enjoy winning the point.

Report this

By truedigger3, April 18, 2011 at 8:22 pm Link to this comment

Re: By Don Levit, April 18 at 2:31 am

Don Levit,

The Social Security Trust Fund has US Treasury Bonds which are guaranteed by LAW and by the FAITH AND CREDIT of the US government to be redeemed upon request.
Currently there is no need to redeem any of these bonds since the yearly SS FICA taxes is more than enough to pay for the yearly benefits to retirees.
Beginning around the year 2018, the projection is that the yearly income from SS FICA tax will not be enough to pay the yearly benefits and SS will start redeeming, gradually, some of these bonds.
So, when you write:
“So, you see, the trust fund makes it no easier to pay benefits than if the trust fund did not exist.” I SAY that is UTTERLY FALSE.
The SS Trustees are similar to many of the regulatory agencies which are controlled by the Finance/Corporate power-elite and are doing their bidding.
As I wrote before, these Finance/Corporate power-elite are orchestrating a clever devious campaign to shake the people faith in the viability of SS, and consequently, the people will be less inclined to defend it against the vultures of Wall St. who are circling above and waiting to sweep down and privatize SS and devour its Trust Fund, and also to cut benefits and give the savings as tax cuts to the super-wealthy.
In addition to the financial gains obtained by the Finance/Corporate elite from privatizing SS and looting its Trust Fund, they want to destroy SS because it is a very successful efficient government program since any successful government program is anathema to them and an obstacle against their aim to privatize all government functions and services and make money on it.

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 18, 2011 at 7:36 pm Link to this comment

A necessary clarification of meaning.

I am not easily impressed, but OzarkiMichael has certainly shown us a fine example of how to win an argument “tea-bagger style”.

It matters not at all that the attack method used is simple deception, as long as it causes the desired results - if it causes the attacked to defend themselves from the accusation then that is enough to give the point to the liars side, so the point is yours OM.

I wrote:
“OK, let’s just pretend that a plan of action is actually formulated by somebody, that has a good chance of successfully wresting America out of the hands of the domestic terrorists now holding office and dismantling the society from within.”

OzarkMicheal misconstrued the last portion of the sentence making it appear as though I advocate “dismantling the society from within”, when it was clearly stated as being the active agenda of “the domestic terrorists now holding office”

I cannot imagine a better example of how willing the enemy is to win at any cost - how ready and eager they have become to use any tactic to cause setbacks to any opposition to their plans of conquest.

And of course they can always simply say, Oh it was just a misunderstanding.

In fact, I’ve never advocated violent protest, since that is the forte of the terrorist in power. They love violence - dead men tell no truths - and have the US army and its array of recently tested lethal crowd control weapons at their disposal and (the terrorists in power) are frothing at the mouth to use them.

Violent protest at home will be handled exactly as its handled in any of the foreign nations the US army has invaded over the last decade or two - with maximum prejudice.

It will result only in more deaths and more violence and accomplish absolutely nothing since the media itself belongs to the enemy and it will spin the events exactly the same way OzarkMicheal spun the above comment.

My porotest:

I don’t own a car or truck, or even a motorbike. I do not smoke tobacco or drink alcohol or frequent bars, clubs or parties. I eat primarily brown rice and steamed vegetables with very little meat (for flavoring only) and never use sugar, corn syrup, canola oil, aspirin, or any sort of can food. Because I regularly clean my ears with peroxide, I no longer catch colds or the flu and so do not need to use any patent or pharmeco drugs, (except Tiger Balm). I question everything, do my own research and trust only my own perception and understanding. However, I’m willing to entertain ideas from anyone, anywhere, at any time.

This is my protest and I don’t even recommend IT as a path that others should follow.

Were I able to advocate a trusted method of protest for others that I thought might work, I would be all over this blog with a set of instructions, however, I have no idea what the right action might be for “successfully wresting America out of the hands of the domestic terrorists now holding office and dismantling the society from within.”

My hope was to trigger thinking in readers and perhaps learn something from the ideas posited in their responses.

I do have to hand it to the girls however, although I’m pretty sure they had to get the teacher to help out with this one. Regardless, a silver star for their unflinching willingness to use whatever means are at their disposal, to win points at any cost. I’m sure thier version of Jesus would be proud.

OzarkMichael’s last missive has proven beyond a shadow of a dounbt that - who or whatever it is - its just a bunker and as such is unworthy of even a modicum of respect, let alone any further dialogue.

So as I said above, the point is yours OM - cherish it.

Report this

By Don Levit, April 17, 2011 at 10:31 pm Link to this comment

Truedigger 3:
Your calculations of when the SS trust fund is exhausted means simply when the numbers, like in a calculator, go to zero.
The trust fund does not represent a store of wealth.
The surplus FICA dollars have been lent to the Treasury to pay for current expenses.  Even the interest is phantom, for it is paid in debt, not cash.
From a paper entitled SSA’s FY 2010 Performance and Accountability Report,” published by the Social Security Administration:
Page 111 “The U.S. Treasury does not set aside financial assets to cover its liabilities associated with the OASI and DI Trust Funds.  The cash received from the OASI and DI trust Funds for investment in these securities is used by the U.S. Treasury for general Government purposes.  Treasury special securities provide the OASI and DI Trust Funds with authority to draw upon the U.S. Treasury to make future benefit payments.  When the OASI and DI Trust Funds require redemption of these securities to make expenditures, the Government finances those expenditures out of accumulated cash balances, by raising taxes, or other receipts, by borrowing from the public (the most likely choice with budget deficits), or repaying less debt, or by curtailing other expenditures.  This is the same way that the Government finances all other expenditures.”
So you see, the trust fund makes it no easier to pay benefits than if the trust fund did not exist.
http://www.ssa.gov/finance/2010/Complete Financial Section.pdf.
Don Levit

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, April 17, 2011 at 9:38 pm Link to this comment

FYI: for all who are interested

http://blogs.suntimes.com/ebert/2011/04/the_one-percenters.html

Well some are starting to talk about it.  Check out the Chicago
Sun-Times Roger Ebert’s Journal, April 8, 2011, “The One-Percenters”

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, April 17, 2011 at 9:37 pm Link to this comment

Leefeller said: “We must not discuss the topic of this article for then Tea Bags would tumble into something they can not cope with, the tea pot of reality.”

Lets discuss the article then. You will as usual completely lose interest but lets try.

Let me quote the very first sentence in the article: “In the ever-so-smug company of the rich and powerful, it is a given that there is never to be any expression of remorse or other acknowledgment of the pain they have inflicted on the lesser mortals they so cavalierly plunder.”

The first sentence of the article sets the table and sets the tone of the subsequent chats by the bloggers. Bloggers like you, Leefeller. It places a vague ‘them’ in an “ever-so-smug company” which despises ‘us’, or more specifically ‘you’ Leefeller, because by my refusal to sing along with cicadas… I am by default not one of ‘you’, but one of ‘them’.

Without any proof, without any examples, the article creates a person or class of people who despise you with their “ever-so-smugness”, and “it is a given that they express no remorse”. Just plain fascism, isnt it? But that is not all, Leefeller-who-wants-to-discuss-the-article-and-thinks-i-do-not. The first sentence also says that they “inflict pain upon lesser mortals” like yourself.

“Lesser mortals”? Oh they are asking for it now. They need to be punished, these terrible smug pain-inflicting monsters, dont they?  We’ll show them, wont we? We will treat them like lesser mortals. see how they and their supporters like it when they get what they deserve, and the day wont be too soon… right?

Thats quite an emotional surge you get reading the first sentence of a Truthdig article. Its an amazing slight of hand. It conjures a class of people marked by smugness and a superiority which is monstrous, but it isnt real. Its a straw man. You were and always will be manipulated by Truthdig without knowing or caring that it is happening. You are easily led.

I will explain it to you Leefeller, although by now you are bored with this post. That little straw man in the first sentence of this article is called ‘projection’ and the slight of hand is called ‘scapegoating’. It is the way Truthdiggers justify their hatred and justify their dream of inflicting pain.

In all the posts written “about the article” so far, has anyone commented on that terrible first sentence? It is typical for Truthdig articles. It is the division of people into ‘genuine’ and ‘sub human’. That first sentence makes you the genuine human beings with freedom to act, while it makes ‘them’ sub-human and ready to be chained. Thats why you like it and want to discuss it. You get fired up by it and buzz like a cicada.

To a cicada i seem to have been doing all sorts of strange unintelligible things, but in fact I was addressing the damned article all along.

For I cannot help but read that tricky first sentence in the article every time I log in, over and over again. Its threat effects me, so I no longer make nice chat. The cicadas also read it every time they log in and they respond to it too. It warms them up. Thats what its there for.

Enjoy the buzz.

Report this

By Don Levit, April 17, 2011 at 9:36 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Truedigger 3:
The trust fund runs out in the future, but what that means is that the numbers go to zero.
The surplus FICA dollars were loaned to the Treasury for many years to pay for current expenses.  In addition, the “interest” credited to the trust fund was debt, not cash, so the entire fund is phantom money, only numbers, like in a calculator.
All the numbers represent is the ability to withdraw from the Treasury without an authorization.
From a paper entitled “SSA’s FY 2010 Performance and Accountability Report, ” published by the Social Security Administration:
Page 111 “The U.S. Treasury does not set aside financial assets to cover its liabilities associated with the OASI and DI Trust Funds.  The cash received from the OASI and DI Trust Funds for investment in these securities is used by the U.S. Treasury for general Government purposes.  Treasury special securities provide the OASI and DI Trust Funds with authority to draw upon the U.S. Treasury to make future benefit payments.  When the OASI and DI Trust Funds require redemption of these securities to make expenditures, the Government funances those expenditures out of accumulated cash balances, by raising taxes, or other receipts, by borrowing from the public (the most likely choice, in mt opinion), or repaying less debt, or by curtailing other expenditures.  This is the same way that the Government finances all other expenditures.”
So, you see, the trust fund makes it no easier to pay benefits than if the trust fund did not exist.
http://www.ssa.gov/finance/2010/Comnplete Financial Section.pdf.
Don Levit

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, April 17, 2011 at 8:53 pm Link to this comment

Hello truedigger3.  Your figures are without a doubt sounder than
mine.  I only suspected the Social Security bankruptcy was a tale of
fiction and I was not too sure of the date when it was predicted to
run out by the Republicans because I heard some years ago that the
Social Security fund was chronically being pilfered to pay for other
things, like the wars and that was why it was on the verge of disaster. 
But I had not heard about it anymore by any of the news editorial
programs or even from the progressive journalists. And the unfact
(read ‘lie’) of that impending disaster is being mouthed by the
Republicans at every opportunity.  I have never believed them. I do
believe you have the best explanation so far about there being a fully
orchestrated campaign to misinform and mislead the public about SS,
and you are keen to say that it is to make it easier for them to argue
for privatization and cutting benefits.  About Obama, I hope you are
not right, sadly though I think you are, he does not have a good track
record for these two years. 

If it is such a freaking farce, (and I agree with you) truedigger3, then
why, with the knowledge you have, are you not out there making waves
and getting the attention of at least those in your town to protest.  If
tons of people did that instead of bitching, the Wisconsin-effect aka
organized grass roots protests, would catch on.  I heard recently of a
town in Northern California who was having a public protest against the
Bank of America that got a $1.9 billion tax rebate last year when it had
profits of more than $4 billion.  They are out there in the public calling
for people to withdraw their money and deposit it into locally-owned,
democratically controlled credit unions or local-owned banks.  It is a
smidgen of the kind of socialized capitalism I have talked about before. 
Maybe it is time to start talking more about it.  Maybe its time has
come.  There really does need to be more organization happening.

Report this
Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, April 17, 2011 at 8:47 pm Link to this comment

Gary Mont on OM .....OMMMMMMMM, is not one person,... but really 4 thirteen to fourteen your old girls,...hey thats my guess too!  This is so much funner than what I had thought was OM….OMMMMMMM! 

All this time I thought OM OMMMMMM! Was a perverted Tea bagger who walked with a limp, showed passive aggressive tendencies, liked gluing the wings of flies together for fun and enjoyed announcing every ten minutes his being a conservative….. Actually one of OM’s OMMMMMs favorite past times,  seems to be his love of accusing people of accusing him of being what he seems to portray himself to be,......seemingly as some kind of consecutive argument?

I am changing my mantra from OMMMMM to something more peaceful and relaxing,..... darn you OMMMMMM!

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, April 17, 2011 at 8:18 pm Link to this comment

Poor LtlBlueDot has an obsession about me.  Hardly ever says
anything of any consequence but wants so bad to look like she is. 
You really ought to get on with your life LtlBlueDot.  Your pissing in
your pants is so childish.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, April 17, 2011 at 7:47 pm Link to this comment

Here is an April 13th posting from GaryMont: “OK, let’s just pretend that a plan of action is actually formulated by somebody, that has a good chance of successfully wresting America out of the hands of the domestic terrorists now holding office and dismantling the society from within.”

“Wresting America out of the hands of the domestic terrorists” sounds more firm, more violent, and more urgent than merely ‘taking back America’, a phrase which cicadas everywhere mock endlessly. There are several Truthdig articles about “Taking back America” with a bounty of bloggers decrying its danger. “Taking back America” is said to be code for fascism, shorthand for racism, romantic imperialism, to name just a few of many criticisms.

“Wresting America out of the hands of the domestic terrorists” is code too, a code which everyone here understands, since you are having a nice chat and no one raised a question about it.

What is it code for? Since progressives define the danger hidden in the phrase “Taking back America”, it is only reasonable that a conservative define the danger hidden in the phrase “Wresting America out of the hands of the domestic terrorists”. But it wont take me a few articles and a hundred blogs. Here it is, done in one sentence:

By defining your political opponents as less than human you justify the use of any weapon you can get your hands on against them, including ‘wresting America out of the hands’ of the people who voted for those representatives, for it is the people who vote for the representatives who must be retrained or restrained, even eliminated if they resist.

GaryMont also advocated “dismantling the society from within” as a goal, stated as if it was understood amongst all of us that the goal is good, we just need a plan, a way to get to the goal. Let me put that quote up for you:

“OK, let’s just pretend that a plan of action is actually formulated by somebody, that has a good chance of successfully wresting America out of the hands of the domestic terrorists now holding office and dismantling the society from within.”


Nobody here lifted an eyebrow at “dismantling the society from within”, the conversation continued as if we are talking about planting a garden. In fact the little “just pretend” by GaryMont was treated as a part of the buzz on how to make things better.

Much milder rhetoric from a conservative… much less violent, much less hateful… like “Taking back America”... alerts you to the danger of fascism and the conversation it would start would not be so cozy. But “Wresting America out of the hands of the domestic terrorists now holding office and dismantling the society from within”? That you can live with. It says: ‘danger! destruction ahead! to me. But thats just me.

This is your division of logic, more sadly a division of people into ‘genuine’ and ‘subhuman’, which is why a double standard is evident in the cicada buzz, in this case GaryMort’s posts.

And just now GaryMort takes the lead in dealing with me, advising the correct line for the cicada comrades to take towards me.

GaryMort, chief cicada among comrades, buzzing so knowingly,  are you smart enough to realize you just got owned? No, you dont have a clue. And the other cicadas wont realize it either. You will just keep buzzing.

Just a guess of course. smile

Report this

By truedigger3, April 17, 2011 at 6:52 pm Link to this comment

Re:By JohnnyBeagle, April 17 at 1:33

JohnyBeagle wrote:
“My son, my wife, and I can no longer be denied health health insurance because of our pre-existing conditions.  That’s one hell of a major step in health care reform”
———————————————————————

JohnyBeagle,

You will not be denied insurance but they will charge you exorbitant rates for your the pre-exisinng condition.
There is no limit whatsoever on what an Insurance company can charge or any limit on periodic increases in premium. There are a lot more buried inside the “fine print” and the devil is in the details??!!

Report this
Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, April 17, 2011 at 6:42 pm Link to this comment

We must not discuss the topic of this article for then Tea Bags would tumble into something they can not cope with, the tea pot of reality.

So one little tip of the iceberg for now!

We go to number 5 of Britts 14 points of Fascism: ” Rampant Sexism.  Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made more rigid. Opposition to abortion is high, as is homophobia and anti-gay legislation and national policy.”

Has anyone seen a gay Chicano tea bag?

Sexism is only as good as the sexist who is leading the canard. So the tea bags do have a few high profile ladies of the most limited intelligence waving tea bags in unison,..... so this makes tea bags not sexist?  Lets face it Bachman and Palin are not on top of supporting womens rights or anyones else’s for that matter.  Bush made president as a half wit so Palin or Bachman could become president, as long as they do not have to match half a wit!!

So we have the tea bags being sponsored and supported by special interests attacking all liberties as entitlements or the old socialisms cheer. I actually saw a tea bag on TV the other day and it was a surprising cornucopia of enlightenment, of course that was because it was coming from Texas!

So Tea bags and Replications flock together touting the classic Republican ideal of lowering taxes for the wealthy plutocracy actually their benefactors, .....so this is the great renovation which is supposed to be creating jobs?  Yes, I see; specially now with the elimination of child labor laws, it is all coming together, surely child labor will create more jobs and it is well known lowering wages will do create more jobs yet.  Tea Bags need to get those big governemnt minimum wages down to 30 cents a day, so we can take jobs back from places like Bangladesh?.... Damn, maybe those unionized Bangladeshi will work for even 29 cents a day, then we can work for 28 cents a day without no stinking union!

I am told, It was not a lie in Wisconson, when it was announce ...  we need to be getting rid of those Unions in Wisconson to save money the state is borke…. then we hear though the wonder Walker stated at a Congressional hearing….... getting rid of Unions would not save money?.... NO!.... thats not a lie, it is just a different way of looking at the truth?  The Republican/Tea bag way of looking at truth and maybe life in general?

I don’t know about you, but I have some tea bags tucked away just to hedge me bets!

If it Sounds like fascism, if it walks like Fascism and it smells like Fascism,.......  it must be fascism! And,.....What War!

Report this

By truedigger3, April 17, 2011 at 6:10 pm Link to this comment

Re: By RedwoodGuy, April 14 at 11:40 pm


RedwoodGuy,
This an excellent post and I agree with you 100%.

Report this

By Litl Bludot, April 17, 2011 at 5:49 pm Link to this comment

Truthdigger 3

Thanks for your correcting Shenom regarding social security and reality.

  This is a poster posing as a progressive, but comes up with these rightwing,
corporate fascist nuggets imbedded in all her posts.  She vows that she will always
vote Democrat if a Republican may win, (i.e. Obama all the way) though she’s been
terribly disappointed.  Sure.  I believe she’s either very confused, or a sock puppet. 

She obviously has enough time to permeate Truthdig with her disinformation
campaign/confusion.  My vote is for a sock puppet.

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 17, 2011 at 5:48 pm Link to this comment

Litl Bludot, ThomasG

Off-Topic Post

Methinks you’re throwing gasoline on a fire here folks.

After re-reading the posts, I believe that OzarkMichael is actually four girls; age 11- 13, from Ontario, Canada, who get a real thrill out of generating angry responses from serious posters and generally disrupting dialogues.

The more ire shown them in response to their teasing, the more titilated they become.

Sometimes they get so giddy and excited by angry replies that they sound incoherent - but its just that all of them want to type the reply and they fight over the keyboard a little.

The reason they chose a racist-fascist-backwoodsy persona is simply because it was the easiest act for pre-pubescents to pull off, without exposing their true ages and lack of political, social and linguistic acumen.

They believe that Backwoodsy Racist-Fascists generally have no understanding of politics, society or language beyond the bare basics, because of what they see on Fox TV daily.

If you refrain from reacting to their teasing long enough, they will become hysterical for a while, but eventually will drop the OzarkMichael handle and shortly thereafter, begin posting under a new nearly opposite persona.

Just a guess of course. smile

Report this

By truedigger3, April 17, 2011 at 5:32 pm Link to this comment

Re: By Shenonymous, April 14 at 8:51 pm

Shenonymous wrote:
“It is indeed true that the reason Social Security in particular is almost bankrupt (in 14 years or so?) is because ....”
————————————————————-

NO Shenonymous NO! Social Security will NOT be bankrupt (in 14 years or so?).
Assuming nothing is done, Social Secutity has enough funds to pay FULL benefits till around the year 2040, after that it can pay 75% of the benefits for another
about 40 years.
With rolling back some of W Bush obscene tax cuts for the super-wealthy and increasing the limit that on salries and wages that can be taxed for SS, now it is about $110,000/year, then SS security can pay FULL benefits very far into the future.
There is an orchestrated campaign to misinform and mislead the public about SS, to make it easy to privatise it, coupled with cutting the benefits. Many “pundits” are taking part in this sinister campaing and Obama as usual is colluding with that campaign, but also as usual he will give eloquent speeches “objecting” and finally, “reluctantly” will “concede”. What a freaking farce!

Report this

By Litl Bludot, April 17, 2011 at 4:47 pm Link to this comment

OzarkMichael

Here’s what you’re supporting.  Here’s your world.  Those who read your words
know who you are and what a threat you are to civilization and to the planet.  We
can’t afford more fascism caused wars, starvation, torture, and the brutalization inflicted on all of humanity and living creatures. 

The planet can’t afford rampant corporate rape and pillage by you fascists.  We’re losing OUR life
support systems due to you and people like you.  You have to be stopped.

http://www.secularhumanism.org/library/fi/britt_23_2.htm

Report this
ThomasG's avatar

By ThomasG, April 17, 2011 at 3:46 pm Link to this comment

Conservative Right-Wing EXTREMIST OzarkMichael go back
to wherever you have been and suck on your Reagan wanker as you
have been doing since the time of Nixon.

Report this

By JohnnyBeagle, April 17, 2011 at 3:32 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Shenonymous, when we allowed the Republicans to take the House, it is we who let Obama down, not the opposite. Politics is the art of compromise and we need to expect Obama to compromise where needed in order to continue the net advancement of our freedom agenda against the tyranny of corporate wealth.  Two steps forward and one step back is still one step forward.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, April 17, 2011 at 1:54 pm Link to this comment

The cynical division of political discourse into two types of “logic” is not half as sad as the division of people into two types. One type of person constitutes the “majority people” with genuine humanity, the other type of person is merely the Other, contemptable, sans humanity.

Yes, the goal of division is not merely political discourse but of people themselves. That division, expressed in a post by an extreme Leftist, finds its roots in the mainstream media, finds its nourishment in Truthdig, and is finding its home in the heart of Leftists everywhere.

Genuine people vs other people.

Start with the mainstream media and their treatment of other people. Where did the idea come from that the grassroots protest which became known as the Tea Party was negligable, just astroturf? It was repeated ad nauseum all over the media. Factually the Tea Party was rather large, most people paid their own way to attend rallies, etc. By comparison there is more evidence that the various ‘majority people’ protests are astroturf.

Why was it decided that the Tea Party was hate filled and dangerous? Factually it was one of the most peaceful mass protests. There is far more evidence that the ‘majority people’ protests are more hate-filled and more dangerous.

Isnt it true, dear Leftist, that you accept and cheer a little dangerousness… from your own? Oh yes you do. When the ‘majority people’ in Wisconson broke down the door and occupied a government building for a few weeks, you were ecstatic. It was the ‘majority people’ “asserting themselves”. When they were supposed to leave but instead camped out on state property, and when they entered the chamber where state representatives voted(a sacred place in a republic) and yelled “Shame! Shame! Shame!” at the retreating state officials, it was cheered as ‘democracy in action’.

I dare you to imagine the Tea Party occupying a government building, streaming onto the senate floor, pointing and yelling. The Tea Party would have been pilloried in the mainstream media and here at Truthdig because occupying a government building would be viewed as a type of intimidation. Any damage done to the building would be all over television. And you? You would have been horrified.

Your view would have been, and i think rightly, that occupation is a type of imposition, a scare tactic, and lets be honest: it is type of force, not exactly the normal democratic process, but more like a siege against the democratic process. 

So where were you when the Wisconsin ‘majority people’ occupied a government building, “keeping it under siege” as it were?

I dont recall a peep from anyone. Instead it was celebrated. It was called “democracy in action.” And you wanted more. Why? Because you accept the divided logic. 

But your division of logic is not half so sad as your division of people, which creates unlimited freedom for those you deem genuinely human and chains for those you deem less than human.

I cannot say nice things about this state of affairs. I will resist it.

Everyone who resists the Leftist division of people is called fascist. The fascism accusation is Truthdig’s raison d’etre, but it is a False Debate in every sense. Every article and every blogger that buzzes with it is a force multiplier. Even if one person were to counter the fascism accusation, offering the most timid rational defense, ah what foolishness that would be! Offering a defense only serves to reinforce that division between genuine people and the ‘other kind’. 

I will not accept the double standard, not even as a joke. Instead I throw your double standard back in your face.

Martha/Thomas proclaimed her truth here, and you perhaps saw only a little harm in it, perhaps would correct her a little, perhaps in the past learned something from her. That is because your truth is not so different from hers. You are in the process of accepting a division of humanity.

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 17, 2011 at 1:09 pm Link to this comment

...says the decision was made under severe pressure from some lobbying circles.”

The visual from this is great!

This is hilarious, once you realize what lobbying really is. The “severe pressure” can only be seen as the weight of all that money used as bribes.

Imagine then that so much money was being offered by the lobbyists of the war machine companies that it actually caused “pressure” on the politicians due to its sheer weight, forcing the slippery little buggers to squirt out on the side of bigger war budgets.

What a magnificent form of government. No wonder politicians are willing to put the world to war to protect their jobs from the realization that they’re obsolete and counter-productive.

Only the hopeless demand to be governed.

Report this
Robert's avatar

By Robert, April 17, 2011 at 11:42 am Link to this comment

‘War lobby won $700 billion budget boost, wants MORE as collapse looms’

The U.S. budget may include $38 billion of spending cuts, but there will be a financial boost for the military. This year’s planned military spending is $700 billion, while other areas including healthcare, education, and infrastructure are on the chopping block. The decision came after a long struggle between lawmakers and the Pentagon saying military cuts will threaten national security. Journalist Chris Hedges says the decision was made under severe pressure from some lobbying circles.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9VFIMTDfTDg

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, April 17, 2011 at 9:39 am Link to this comment

JohnnyBeagle you make very good points but I had such “faith” in
Obama who promised imposing leadership, who found capitulation
a virtue that frittered away my liberal concerns and I will complain
up the wazoo. I’ve let him know a few times now how disappointed
I am in the tenuous position in which I think he put millions upon
millions of Americans.  That should not have happened for one
minute. Of course I know how formidable a course he has had.  We
all know.  But The compromises made have not been fair and they
have not been just. It is a bit late to rectify, compensate, counteract, or
neutralize what was given away. He is going to have to climb Everest to
win again.

While my only political intention is to defeat Republicans anywhere
and for any office, who I believe are the genesis of every politically
social and economic problem in this country, I will vote Democratic
in every election because they are the only ones with the numbers to
make that defeat a reality, I can still declare that Obama was not as
strong the torchbearer as I expected.  Unless that is, Bernie Sanders,
the most coherent and cogent politician in Washington, the socialist,
runs.  But no one else mind you.

Report this

By JohnnyBeagle, April 17, 2011 at 9:33 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

My son, my wife, and I can no longer be denied health health insurance because of our pre-existing conditions.  That’s one hell of a major step in health care reform.

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 17, 2011 at 5:51 am Link to this comment

JohnnyBeagle:So you are saying that with McCain, we’d have the present advances in health care reform?

Advances?
You have “advances” in health care??

And here I thought the insurance companies were still running the whole show…

Please list these advances.

Only those that have been made into law thank you - not the ones that Obama is “working towards”.

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 17, 2011 at 2:57 am Link to this comment

MarthaA:Michael Moore would be good.

A. Mister Moore would be unlikely to accept such a nomination, as he’s already aware that the position of POTUS is purely a cosmetic front for corporate control, and because he’s aware of B.

B. Were he to offer to run for the office of POTUS, a bus full of nuns would run him over three times, the day after his public notification of acceptance.

Realize that the domestic terrorists occupying the seats of power in the USA today have absolute control over the justice system. They could shoot 100 people in broad daylight, in front of a million witnesses and still suffer no legal consequences.

In fact, within a few months, the event would have been written off as a Hollywood publicity stunt, or an act of staged public nuisance by a handfull of cell phone crazies. The new reality would be broadcast by the corporate-owned media hundreds of times a day until it bacame the accepted reality.

Just like 9/11. Standard operating procedures.

Report this

By Litl Bludot, April 17, 2011 at 1:31 am Link to this comment

Martha A and Chip,

What is amazing to me is that the MSM was able to slander Nader to the point
that people posting here are not able to mention his name, and then have the
temerity to believe that they are capable now to withstand that same corporate
media and vote for someone other than Obama.

My thought is that if you weren’t able to withstand the lies and slander and
then insanity of being told you had no choice but to vote for Obama and now
can’t think of Nader, I don’t think you have a chance of withstanding the MSM
corporate media telling you again, exactly how to vote again.

In other words, you are not capable of actually voting for who is the best
person to defeat the corporate fascists.  Because that is the person the MSM
corporate media will be able to convince you to vote against.  And like 2008,
that’s what you’ll do.

Report this
MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, April 17, 2011 at 12:57 am Link to this comment

Michael Moore would be good.

Report this

By chip, April 17, 2011 at 12:49 am Link to this comment

I am willing to give Ron Paul a shot.

I heard Kucinich ain’t running.

We gotta come up with someone other than this spineless, two faced, bought and sold out, thing we have been calling our president.

Ron Paul could win.

Anyone know what Bernie Sanders is up to?

Hell, if they can get Trump Lets recruit Michel Moore.

I am open to suggestions.

Report this
MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, April 17, 2011 at 12:36 am Link to this comment

Political dialectic of the Left is the logical
proof of the political agenda
of the political
Left.

Political dialectic of the Right is the logical
proof of the political agenda
of the political
Right.

It is not logical for the Left to argue political
benefit and best interest of the Left using the
frame of the political dialectic of the
Right
, because dialectic is a
logical loop
that is causal in
nature
and arguing a “causal loop” that
does not support the thesis of your argument is
not beneficial to the best interest and outcome of
your argument.

There is more space for logical discourse in
political dialectic than there is for emotions that
lead the logically challenged to support the
argument of opposing political dialectic by
arguing within the frame of opposing political
dialectic while never becoming aware that
their own argument is false to the frame
of their own political dialectic.

Does it serve the aims of the political agenda of
the political Left’s Democratic Party to use the
proof of opposing Republican Party’s political
Right dialectic to prove the Democratic Party’s
political Left’s argument? —— Or, do you think
that it would better serve the Democratic Party’s
political Left’s agenda to use the proof of the
Democratic Party’s political Left’s dialectic to
prove the Democratic Party’s political Left
argument??

Success in any argument on logic lies in the
latter, rather than the former argument; this is
why the Republican Right has been so successful
since the time of Nixon and why the Democratic
Left has been so dismal and pathetic.

My natural inclination is to believe that no one is
ignorant and unaware enough to willingly
use someone else’s dialectical frame that
is contrary to their own frame of dialectic
,
and that when it is done, that it is done with
disingenuous intent and purpose to lead others
to accept false conclusions and a false sense of
advantage.

False debate is correct, because if the Left really
wanted to win the budget debate for the benefit
of the majority population, they would and could,
but they don’t.

Report this
MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, April 16, 2011 at 11:35 pm Link to this comment

There is more space for logical discourse in political dialectic than
there is for emotions that lead the logically challenged to support
the argument of opposing political dialectic by arguing within the
frame of opposing political dialectic while never becoming
aware that their own argument is false to the frame of
their own political dialectic.

Do you think that it will serve the aims of your political agenda to
use the proof of opposing political dialectic to prove your own
argument? —— Or, do you think that it would better serve your
own political agenda to use the proof of your own political dialectic
to prove your own argument??

Success in any argument on logic lies in the latter, rather than
the former argument; this is why the Right has been so successful
since the time of Nixon and why the Left has been so dismal and
pathetic.

My natural inclination is to believe that no one is ignorant and
unaware enough to willingly use someone else’s dialectical
frame
that is contrary to their own frame of dialectic
, and
that when it is done, that it is done with disingenuous intent and
purpose to lead others to accept false conclusions and a false
sense of advantage.

No member of the majority population should vote for either a
Republican or Obama, as Obama has followed a Republican
agenda, perhaps there will be a Democrat, Independent, or Green
that will run for the Left so that the Left will have someone to vote
for, otherwise there is not much reason to vote that I can see, if
only one party rules no matter what—and it is not the party that
represents the majority population, because Obama has ignored
the majority population all the time he has been in office and it is
to late to begin now just before his election, as far as I am
concerned.

Obama has done such a good job for the Conservative
Republicans that without a doubt they will put him right back into
office.

Report this

By aacme88, April 16, 2011 at 10:02 pm Link to this comment

We can expect the Democrats to suddenly find Jesus and remember their progressive base, and decide that, at least for the next 1 1/2 years or so, we are not “fucking retards” after all. They will be making noises like they give a damn.
Will we believe them again?

Report this

By JohnnyBeagle, April 16, 2011 at 8:24 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Gary Mont, April 16 at 10:17 pm Link to this comment


Barnum and Bailey sure knew their people.

Truth is, Americans have no choice.

Which crook would you replace Obama with?

So you are saying that with McCain, we’d have the present advances in health care reform?

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 16, 2011 at 6:17 pm Link to this comment

JohnnyBeagle: Obama needs a second term to get anything else done.  Stop whining about this political fact and get behind his re-election.

—-

Barnum and Bailey sure knew their people.

Truth is, Americans have no choice.

Which crook would you replace Obama with?

At least Obama talks pretty and acts like a nice guy, and since America Today is All Show and No Substance, Obama is definitely perfect for the lead starring role of POTUS.

Your Emperor in naked. Why are you so blind?

Let me guess….

Making good money from the current situation are you?

Report this
Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, April 16, 2011 at 1:33 pm Link to this comment

In 1949 the Federal Communications Commission instituted the Fairness Doctrine, apparently back then they named things relative to what they were supposed to be doing, unlike the defense department.  In 1987, in order to improve on Republican values,  the FCC ended the Fairness Doctrine and now we have what we see today. so in the name of smaller government and less regulation, we have what seems an inordinate number of talking Russ Limbaugh’s who seem to relate to fellow closet and born again bigots, who seem to dug through their closets, dragging out those so dusty sheets with eye holes and firing up the wood shop building proper wooden crosses for bonfires!

In the name of smaller government and the extractions of those pesky regulations we can equate Britts 14 points of Fascism, and listed below specifically point number six:

“6.  Controlled Mass Media. Sometimes the media is directly controlled by the government, but in other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government regulation, or sympathetic media spokespeople and executives. Censorship, especially in war time, is very common.”

Seems to me, if government is manipulated or even directly controlled by the plutocracy, and has shady bed time connections with corporations, Britts Fascist point number 6 fits,....  One only needs to ask what war?

Still the most recent attack on the existence of public broadcasting seems yet another form of control, so those who would disapprove of fairness in the name of (oh ...lets make something up)..... cutting costs?  After all, we cannot have those tax paying middle class fools footing stinking concepts of fairness!..... And surely we don’t want Public Broadcasting to continue spouting off horrifying terror stories,....... like GE did not pay any taxes or Russ Limbaugh belongs to a union, nor nonpublic air wave time discussing annoying things conservatives seem to find so annoying, like art and music, history and the world outside of Bad Breath Texas,..... and whats with this Pinko no advertising socialist thing Public Broadcasting?

I figure the word “fairness” had long long ago, disappeared with the dodo from the Republican/Tea Bag ever un evolving vocabulary .......in the name of frugality,  for the convenience and comfort of smaller minds!

Report this

By JohnnyBeagle, April 16, 2011 at 10:42 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Obama needs a second term to get anything else done.  Stop whining about this political fact and get behind his re-election. We’ve already achieved some reform in health care, with more to do.  We’ve already achieved some banking reform, with more to do.  We’re on our way to tax reform, with more to do.  Stop crying that we’ve not done it all!  We’ve had 2 years to undo 40 years…

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, April 16, 2011 at 1:12 am Link to this comment

The Republicans promised to filibuster allowing the unemployed to be cut off from benefits and in the face of a huge unemployment situation and
an enormous lack of jobs to alleviate that situation. It was also in a very cold winter and that means many would have gone without adequate
housing, or heat and maybe food.

Say the tax on the wealthy had sunset and allowed to expire.  Well the unemployed would not have had an extension in benefits because the Republicans would have filibustered until that legislation had died.

So while I too do not want to forgive Obama for not standing up to the Republicans, and I said that on TD at the time it happened back in December 2010 that I would have to seriously reconsider my vote when the next election came around if he were to let the tax cut continue, I had to take a more sober view as I cannot ever in my conscience not vote for a Democrat if it would mean that a Republican could have a chance to win an election.
*****************

I understand the perspective: The GOP held a psychopath’s gun to the heads of millions of Americans, quite literally, as their lives were at stake.  And when Obama caved they knew they had him, like the abusive husband who threatens to kill the kids if the wife doesn’t obey him no matter WHAT evil he perpetrates on her and the children.

Simply, the GOP doesn’t give a shit if people starve, freeze, get sick, or live with no hope for their children.  The Democrats still do.

While it’s true I can share the burden now, and live relatively comfortably, I remember living on cheap hamburger, and keeping my thermostat at 60 degrees in brutal winters, not even having a telephone hunting for a job while living on $62/week unemployment.  It’s tough, very tough.  I haven’t forgotten….

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, April 15, 2011 at 11:12 pm Link to this comment

Redwoodguy responded to me with this: “That sounds like a misunderstanding of why governments grow. You are suggesting they grow to serve a progressive agenda, and that’s patently false even on the surface.”

Ah ‘the surface’. Oft have I shunned its shining shallowness, never dreaming that one ought to appeal to it in an argument the way you just did.  Yes, I now understand that even though it is the most superficial of all dimensions, you thought for me ‘the surface’ would add weight and depth to your argument.

Unfortunately no, it did not.

Redwoodguy said to me: “I think you have adopted (unknowingly) the propaganda of the far right which at all times seeks to train the population that Government growth is growth of a Welfare State.”

Thanks for the kind yet patronizing words. You are wrong about the ‘unknowingly’ part. You are also wrong about the ‘propaganda’ part. Actually you are wrong in every part.

There is a Chinese proverb that says: “The buzzing of the cicadas is loudest when they feel they are smarter than everyone else”. And speaking of patronizing, here is your closing remark:

“So no one needs to rely on TV or news propaganda to understand the nature of our current system. One only needs to have enough reasoning power to look at the actual statistics.”

Ah actual statistics. Not propaganda! I like the sound of that. I like that better than ‘the surface’. Thank you for considering me worthy of your deeper GINI argument. Could I have a little more?

I ask this not for my ‘unknowing’ and ‘misled’ ‘propagandized’ self, but for the rest of the readers here, like poor little Leefeller, who believes as you do but doesnt express himself half as convincingly.

Please, lets look at actual statistics. Wont you show me what is so obvious that one can behold it “even on the surface”? This should be easy for you.

So lets begin: Find the total US budget from 1960(roughly 50 years ago as you said) and describe what percent the military took up in the 1960 budget.

Then find the military portion of government spending for 2010. What percent of the budget is that?

The government spending(federal/state/local) has certainly grown, and now you can examine which expenditures in the last 50 years have grown the most.

I said it was ‘progressive’ spending that grew the most, you said I was wrong because you know its the military thats getting a bigger share over the last 50 years.

One of us knows what he is talking about and the other clings to “patent falsehoods”.

Look it up. You know, “actual statistics” and all that.

Hmm. Probably you never checked the numbers before so you need a little help. Here is one website(of many) that traces the government spending in the US since 1962:

http://www.davemanuel.com/us-government-spending.php

You have to scroll down the page to find the Total outlays. After you find those Defense percentages in 1962 and 2010, compare them.

If you know how to blush, now is a good time. Dont worry. Soon you will regain your confidence by reading patently false Truthdig articles(and who knows what else). Perhaps you can regroup with your fellow cicadas and come up with more accusations of fascism. Trust me, that will help you forget the whole thing, as if this interlude never happened.

In the meantime, during this brief blushing, this lucid moment when you arent a cicada, i want to know something…

I would like to know why you listened to far Left propaganda(unknowingly of course) and believed patent falsehoods.

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, April 15, 2011 at 10:41 pm Link to this comment

No one is more disgusted and disappointed in Obama than I am
ITW, but I do appreciate your civil disagreement.  However the
disagreement may not really exist.  I did not say I was happy with
what he did.  All I did in my last post was to recount what he did
and why.  You should have to reread it.  You said, “Had he not, one
year of increased revenue from the 5% would have paid for 2 1/2
years of benefits for the unemployed!”  That might be true.  But I
think that is optimistic if the tax had been let to expire and I think
Obama took Occam’s Razor as a solution.  Was it the correct
solution?  We really cannot know.  We can only speculate. 

Congress was originally responsible to legislate unemployment
insurance benefits (FUTA) and they must approve any extensions.  The
Republicans promised to filibuster allowing the unemployed to be cut
off from benefits and in the face of a huge unemployment situation and
an enormous lack of jobs to alleviate that situation. It was also in a very
cold winter and that means many would have gone without adequate
housing, or heat and maybe food. 

Say the tax on the wealthy had sunset and allowed to expire.  Well the
unemployed would not have had an extension in benefits because the
Republicans would have filibustered until that legislation had died. 

So while I too do not want to forgive Obama for not standing up to the
Republicans, and I said that on TD at the time it happened back in
December 2010 that I would have to seriously reconsider my vote when
the next election came around if he were to let the tax cut continue, I
had to take a more sober view as I cannot ever in my conscience not
vote for a Democrat if it would mean that a Republican could have a
chance to win an election.  I realized that I had let my emotions carry
me away from rationality.  Would it have been better to allow the
unemployed to not get any extension?  I have never had to be in that
position, so I do not know what it is like not to have any money at all
coming in.  I have never starved and i have always had a decent roof
over my head and shoes to wear.  Those who are married and have
spouses who work have it a little easier than those who do not.  I don’t
know ITW.

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, April 15, 2011 at 9:52 pm Link to this comment

I rarely disagree with my friend Shenonymous, but on this I must:  I feel the price Obama paid was too high, far too high for what he got.  He allowed the wealthiest 5% to get a tax cut for 2 years to give the unemployed 10% 1 year of benefits.  Had he not, one year of increased revenue from the 5% would have paid for 2 1/2 years of benefits for the unemployed!

The cost to the nation was huge.  Plus, had the tax cuts for EVERYONE expired, Obama would have been EASILY able to say to the 95%: “See? They don’t give a rat’s ass about you! The were willing to see YOUR taxes go up if the richest weren’t allowed to STILL pay less than their fair share!”

Plus, it would have shown the GOP that there are some lines they cannot cross, something he STILL hasn’t beat into them.

And, as bad as a tax increase would be, it would be a badly needed injection of revenue into a budget bloated by military spending and corporate gifts.

And do you know what the Republicans would have done? They would have done what they are doing now: advocating MORE tax cuts for the rich but not for anyone else!

Right now I’m disgusted and disappointed with President Obama.  Today he drew a line in the sand. But I won’t believe it means anything until he stands up and says “NO DEAL!” and vetoes these evil bills the House is passing.

Report this
RayLan's avatar

By RayLan, April 15, 2011 at 9:38 pm Link to this comment

Leefeller
You have missed your calling as a hilarious but searing satirist.

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, April 15, 2011 at 6:42 pm Link to this comment

CJ, you move too quickly through your accusations and leave too
much to speculation of what you mean.  Dropping bits of your
ideology is a bit like having to dodge bird droppings.  From your
first statement at April 15 12:21am, it is obvious you have strong
feelings against capitalism. But going back to your April 14 2:33pm
remarks, I don’t see what you said about those Americans in an
unspecified number who have been ruined by high-financial
manipulation?  A couple of them are friends of mine.  It is uncertain
whether you are complaining about their ruination, or as an anti-
democratic, anti-capitalist, you would say because of their gullibility
they deserved ruination. You seems to navigate the contradictory at
times. You say their ruination is thanks to the liberal Democratic Party
but it is not clear whether the emphasis is on liberal or Democratic? 
And what does it matter that Clinton was foremost an ardent
ambitionist and ruthless (again that word ruthless sans contextual
definition) capitalist? 

What did you really ‘mean’ by the arcane morsel comment about Adam
Smith being “just wrong, and that capitalism is simply wrong in its
underlying premises concerning human psychology and sociology.“  Are
you a social psychologist?  It looks like you look only at the surface of
things, or at the least that is all your remarks contain.  Your cavalier
brief analysis that “capitalism is simply wrong” is simply itself wrong.

“The solution is indeed a revolution,” you also say.  But you do not say
what kind of revolution.  “Something more than political revolution” is
rather vague.  Anarchists consistently bark for revolution and most of
them have the glitter of violent revolution in their eyese.  Is that what
you are advocating? 

It is true that in December, 2010, Pearl Harbor Day to be exact, Obama
went back on a central campaign promise, and reached a deal with
Senate Republicans that would allow all Bush tax cuts, including those
for the top 2% of Americans which Obama had pledged to let expire, to
remain at present levels for the next 2 years.  That extension came as
part of a package that accomplished some key Democratic goals,
including extending long-term unemployment benefits for 13 months,
preventing 7 million Americans from being cut off with no job
prospects.  Whether progressives like it or not, Obama was not in a
good position.  Republicans in their usual obstinate unreasonableness
refused to move an inch on their obsessive mission of getting their
favorite donors permanent tax breaks by refusing to vote on any bill
that did not include extension of the Bush tax cuts, including one which
would have extended them for 95% of households.  It was a deadlock. 
Obama had the option to allow the session to continue and ultimately
end without having accomplished any other legislative goals, like repeal
of DADT or ratification of the New START treaty, which would have also
raised taxes on all households.  Or he could have struck a deal, which
is what he did, striking down one of his major campaigning points and
deficit reduction tools in the process.  Sometimes, as much as it hurts,
one has to barter one’s values if millions of people’s well-being is at
stake and in December of 2010, that was the situation. There are all
kinds of thumb-screws along with other kinds of screws.

Report this
RedwoodGuy's avatar

By RedwoodGuy, April 15, 2011 at 4:20 pm Link to this comment

@OzarkMichael
“The Progressive/Socialist/Communist answer to the growth of private power is to grow the governement power, which is what the Western democracies are constantly, steadily drifting towards.”

That sounds like a misunderstanding of why governments grow. You are suggesting they grow to serve a progressive agenda, and that’s patently false even on the surface. They are certainly drifting, but not toward any socialism.

Examine carefully the massive government growth in the past 50 years. It comes in three specific areas for the most part. They are: Militarism; State Security; Corporate Regulators cum Promoters.

Let’s get some details. Militarism is easy to see and document. Look at the DOD budget and the extensive empire of global bases, detention centers and the like. Really now, there’s no argument on this one, is there?

State Security. Not only the obvious Homeland Security operations, but the NSA, CIA, and a dozen other agencies have expanded perhaps 10-fold in 50 years. The justice department, and prison operations and fusion centers have grown wildly. Most of the security expansion and apparatus isn’t even documented publicly, such as private security contracting.

Corporate Oversight & Promotion. This is not as obvious, and needs explanation. What was once a regulator - say the FDA, has been captured by Corporatists to become the inside promoter of the corporate agenda. The shepherd which guides the flock of drug companies through the public’s due scrutiny, in order to essentially undermine that scrutiny to get the “seal of approval” for marketing. So, all growth in this agency isn’t serving a public interest at all, it is serving a Corporate interest.

Now, take all your agencies of this type - the FAA, the SEC the USDA and you will see that in fact and reality, they are working for Corporate interests, and therefore can’t possibly be said to have anything to do with progressive reforms.

I think you have adopted (unknowingly) the propaganda of the far right which at all times seeks to train the population that Government growth is growth of a Welfare State. Well, it is of course the exact opposite. And that is why it grows fastest under conservative administrations.

This massive government we have is doing near to nothing in service to progressive ideals, but is rather a tool of the corporate fascists. The bigger it gets, the more money can be appropriated into the few hands.

Any kind of liberal reform - call it progressive or socialistic - seeks to bring increased democratic EQUITY to the allocation of wealth and resources. We have a statistic to measure this equity, and it is called the GINI Coefficient. This is what really tells you if a nation is oligarchical or socialistic. Now, just look at the GINI for the USA, and you will see in an instant two important things: 1) We look nothing at all like a socialist country. Exactly the opposite. 2) Our GINI is moving steadily in the direction of oligarchy where all wealth is concentrated into the fewest hands. 

So no on needs to rely on TV or news propaganda to understand the nature of our current system. One only needs to have enough reasoning power to look at the actual statistics.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, April 15, 2011 at 3:10 pm Link to this comment

Leefeller said: “Money keeping the Military Industrial Complex flushing strong seems most patriotic! We don’t need no stinking road or schools or old people collecting their Social Security. How else can our great Constitution be protected from the terror and fear of things like Progressivism/Socialism/Communism, aliens, gays and abortion, not to forget Teachers, unions and Social Security and Medicare .... hence why we need Fascism?”

The answer to this question is very important to Leefeller. He asks it of me every day. Unsatisfied by my answers from 3 years ago, 2 years ago, last year, and this year, he doggedly persists for the sake of truth. This proves that he really wants is a highly intellectual answer, elevated to the intellectual rigor that Truthdiggers always apply to the hard questions.

I will answer him. His persistance earns it for him. So get ready, this time will be final. All will be revealed, answered, and put to rest.

All my prior answers to the accusation of fascism pale by comparison. I never satisfied the deep probing questions of Leefeller. This time will be different. This time will be quite good.

I am going to give this answer a whole new kind of effort. I am going to answer this with the focused concentration of a Leftist, which means real scholarliness, compassion, truth, good intentions, and a heavy dose of politically correct expression so that no one’s feelings will be hurt.

This will be exactly the kind of answer that repeated accusations of fascism demand, which Leefeller wants and needs to hear.

I will go into the same depth of soul searching that Leefeller goes into when challenged to account for himself. It is time for parity. It is time to pay up the account, to level the playing field, to see things as never before. Yes, that means a whole new standard for me. 

Everything good and pure has been consulted and my homework done. The internet has been searched, no stone left unturned. I will at last provide an answer, the depth of which shall finally satisify both the gods and men. This then, is my final answer to the Fascism accusation.

And now we come to it, now we discuss it.

Let us begin with a consideration of the philosophy and economics of the question, including the labor unions, aliens, gays and abortion, not to forget Teachers, unions and Social Security and Medicare. All in relation to the Tea Party, the budget, and most of all the military, keeping in mind and making constant comparison to the the Weimar Republic.

(I countered the tired Fascist accusation here, but space required deletion. All should know it already.)

Footnotes available upon request.

Report this
Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, April 15, 2011 at 10:54 am Link to this comment

Raylan, questioning the military budget does not seem very patriotic, after all killing people in order to spread democracy needs to be appreciated or else! Money keeping the Military Industrial Complex flushing strong seems most patriotic! We don’t need no stinking road or schools or old people collecting their Social Security. How else can our great Constitution be protected from the terror and fear of things like Progressivism/Socialism/Communism, aliens, gays and abortion, not to forget Teachers, unions and Social Security and Medicare .... hence why we need Fascism?

Number four of Britts 14 points of Fascisim!

4.  Supremacy of the Military. Even when there are widespread domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized.

Hey! Ozark Michael, may I suggest getting together with Obama, he too is a Constitutional scholar and knows exactly what the Constitution unintended for the Federal Governemnt!

Report this

By DigThis, April 15, 2011 at 9:42 am Link to this comment

REAL AGENDA:

DEBT CRISIS = EXCUSE TO CUT/PRIVATIZE SOCIAL PROGRAMS

Report this

By DigThis, April 15, 2011 at 9:39 am Link to this comment

REAL DEBT DEBATE (the one we’re not having) =
WAR/SECURITY SPENDING v. SOCIAL PROGRAMS

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, April 15, 2011 at 9:29 am Link to this comment

“The liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than their democratic State itself. What, in its essence, is Fascism, but ownership of government by an individual, by a group or by any controlling private power.” Franklin D. Roosevelt

The Progressive/Socialist/Communist answer to the growth of private power is to grow the governement power, which is what the Western democracies are constantly, steadily drifting towards. Lets use President Roosevelt’s words to define where we really stand:

“The liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of federal power to a point where it becomes stronger than their original Constitition intended. What, in its essence, is Progressivism/Socialism/Communism, but ownership by the federal government of the powers once reserved for the states and for the individual, gradually/legally/or forcefully acquired by the controlling federal power.”

Report this

By DigThis, April 15, 2011 at 9:15 am Link to this comment

DEBT = WAR (DEFENSE) SPENDING

FAKE DEBATE = SOCIAL PROGRAMS

Report this
RayLan's avatar

By RayLan, April 15, 2011 at 9:04 am Link to this comment

I for one am painfully bored of hearing the deficit being used as a vehicle for driving the middle class off the cliff.
It’s such a stupid one-sided canard for anybody who knows anything about the economy.
It’s not that entitlements suddenly broke the bank stopping the wheels of industry, but that Wall Street malfeasance caused a deficit in capital - a credit crunch that threatened to bring the capitalist system to a grinding halt.
The public deficit increased as a result of government bailing out its corrupt bosses, not to mention the stupid immoral wars.
It all sounds righteous to drone on about paying our debts and being fiscally responsible, but that focuses on only one part of the problem to divert attention from the real cause ( a classic right wing tactic).
There IS a revenue problem , not just a spending problem - it’s basic accounting -
Net Profit = revenue - expenses.
The salivating greedy oligarchists want to take revenue out of the equation, and stupidly Oblahma has not pushed back. Of course, the right doesn’t see it as a revenue problem, since they would be perfectly happy to cut all social services. But that has nothing to do with the recession - just their greedy self-centered view of government.

Report this

By DigThis, April 15, 2011 at 8:51 am Link to this comment

I thought this article was going to be about FALSE DEBATE ON THE DEBIT.

Surely defense spending is the single biggest budget and policy issue that we face.  Not to mention the overwhelming moral dilemma.  Yet it is ignored.  I would think that EVERY SINGLE ARTICLE PUBLISHED on the debit crisis would point this out.

Not only do Rand Paul’s budget proposals hurt programs like social security, medicaid and medicare, they do so without addressing the defense budget.
 
Therefore, attacks on these programs are not really about debt crisis.  Like Gov Walker in Wisconsin, most of Congress, along with the White House, are using the debt crisis excuse to pursue political agendas.  Therefore the DEBATE over the DEBT CRISIS is FAKE!

Report this

By Litl Bludot, April 15, 2011 at 5:27 am Link to this comment

Leefeller,

Thanks.

  And for the great link. I hope others read it.  I am going to post it again.  http://www.alternet.org/news/150463?page=entire

alternet is going to be one of my most frequented sites now.

Report this
Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, April 15, 2011 at 4:43 am Link to this comment

This is number nine from Britts 14 points of Fascism!

9.  Corporate Power is Protected. The industrial and business aristocracy are the ones who put the government leaders into power, creating a mutually beneficial business/government relationship and power elite.

So Blue Dots quote from FDR has validity…. Koch Brothers anyone?

Lets face it the Koch Brothers are only the tip of the ice Berg, there are numinous Conservative secrete organizations, check out this one at: http://www.alternet.org/news/150463?page=entire.

This outfit calls itself ALEC, is non profit and listed as not a lobby group, but they represent corporatist interests?
“This shadowy organization has played an extraordinary role in shaping pro-corporate legislation in a number of states.”

The separation of truth and state now has new meaning!

I always wondered who was writing the conservative play book aside from Russ Limbaugh and Fox News?

Report this

By Litl Bludot, April 15, 2011 at 2:14 am Link to this comment

“I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and
causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. ... corporations
have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will
follow, and the money power of the country will endeavour to
prolong it’s reign by working upon the prejudices of the people
until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is
destroyed.”
Abraham Lincoln

“The liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the
growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than
their democratic State itself. What, in its essence, is Fascism, but
ownership of government by an individual, by a group or by any
controlling private power.” Franklin D. Roosevelt

Report this

By SteveL, April 15, 2011 at 12:53 am Link to this comment

If cutting pensions, SSI, health care is such a great thing.  Let congress cut theirs.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, April 14, 2011 at 9:53 pm Link to this comment

CJ said: “(I countered the tired Soviet Union and China argument here, but space required deletion. All should know it already.)”

The argument is ‘tired’ and the ‘space required deletion’?

Only a Leftist could explain the death of untold millions with a parenthetical remark about a deletion.

Report this
CJ's avatar

By CJ, April 14, 2011 at 8:21 pm Link to this comment

I was, as I always am, careful to note that the economy is not so bad within the context of (redundant) ruthless capitalism. That does not mean the economy isn’t awful from the standpoint of morality/social justice and less philosophically for billions around the world. (I can’t always delve into that as space doesn’t allow and I tend to be repetitive anyway. Well, the message isn’t difficult.) I noted in particular the number of Americans who’ve been ruined by high-financial manipulation. Thanks in no small part to the liberal Democratic Party, to Clinton most especially, as an ardent, ambitious and ruthless a capitalist as ever came down the proverbial pike.

I also noted, I thought with adequate irony, the new “structural” unemployment.

I actually meant that the economy is, by the usual capitalist measures, recovering. I didn’t note how slowly, which goes without saying.

(But I’m just hearing Bob Reich saying the ecomony is NOT growing; I stand corrected.)

Naomi Klein was redundant when she entitled her book, “Disaster Capitalism.” Capitalism, since it’s Modern inception and as private accumulation in turn drove the formation of nation-states, has always been disastrous—on a global scale. It relies on the grossly immoral if never illegal exploitation of human labor and natural resources, as history actually shows. Even more tamed forms of capitalism result in massive destruction. Evidence is everywhere presently and everywhere in the relatively short history of capitalism, during which time the system (not “methodolgy,” which is the science of method) has done more damage than all previous systems combined.

The same can hardly be said of socialism, which has seldom been attempted at the national level and never on a global scale. Even so, the best that any given nation-state has managed in human history, let alone the Modern era, has been social democracy, a seriously mitigated capitalism (but hardly socialism) that incorporates some socialist policy, which is to say more generally a concern for social justice.

(I countered the tired Soviet Union and China argument here, but space required deletion. All should know it already.)

With a genuine socialism, or perhaps anarcho-syndicalism if one prefers, labor would indeed own all means of production. That is, labor would, if one insists, own itself, as would only be right by universal morality that is part and parcel of human reason. (That, by the way, is not a marxist position.) Not investor-shareholders (or landlords) and not the state, but those who labor would reap the benefits of that labor. Ideally, and I confess to my share of idealism even if still less than Adam Smith’s or that of the average American voter for the Big Business Party, the state could then readily be dispensed with.

Utopian? Not really, justice and not perfection is the prize King was talking about, though Malcolm X was talking about it before King.

(Which is why I advocated the UAW taking over—okay, expropriating— General Motors when it had the chance, maybe to produce more mass transit instead of more cars. I’m aware of the violence that would have ensued on the part of the state, or states: Michigan and the U.S., which know nothing of non-violence.)

The state will one day, I think, become as anachronistic as slave-owning, not that those don’t persist to this day, and not just “over there.” And, despite our desperate clinging to empire (We voted for ‘em, put ‘em in power), that day might not be as far off as I used to think. (Those who voted for Scott Walker have been asking themselves why they did, which is progress.) Meanwhile, we might look to a few spots in Latin America and maybe to a couple in the Middle East by now for better examples of how to proceed in less murderous—both foreign and domestic—fashion.

Report this
RedwoodGuy's avatar

By RedwoodGuy, April 14, 2011 at 7:40 pm Link to this comment

I don’t blame rape victims, and I also don’t blame the American people anymore for being duped by all these gang-bangers and criminals in DC. There, I’ve said it.

Now I USED to say it all the time - “Americans are stupid sheep” and all the variations. But think about it - - they are really victims of horrendous fraud and a criminal enterprise so big it is nearly impossible to see the edge of it.

I hope everyone here has watched all four parts of this excellent documentary on Edward Bernays who invented virtually every method of political and corporate brainwashing in use today. If you haven’t seen this, you just might not believe it has been working for some 80 years now on Americans. Check it out: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=6718420906413643126#

With that amount of sophisticated, structured, intentional brainwashing, how would you expect anyone to come through it unvictimized? No, we have to stop saying our brothers and sisters are stupid. We have to stop laying blame on EACH OTHER, and put it squarely where it belongs - on the CRIMINALS who are systematically pillaging the country and defrauding the citizens.

Don’t they just love watching us little people blaming each other! Calling each other stupid sheep. Hang on here a minute. Let’s turn the spotlight on the actual villains for a change. Let’s not have plumbers waging war against carpenters, and pitting teachers against engineers. Let’s root out the menace that has poisoned every well of public good. Behind all of these thugs in DC and on Wall Street are so-called think tanks (fancy public relations firms) flush with corporate cash to flood the public’s TV and Radio airwaves, and fill to the brim the nation’s newspapers with propaganda.

Just listen to what Obama said last night on the budget. He said, “We have to learn to live within our means,” as he peddles his oily plan to reduce public expenditures. Now I ask you - - - is this not the “richest country on earth”? Declared so by everyone from school kids to public figures? Of course it is. And if you are the richest country on earth, should you live like the poorest? What nonsense is he peddling? He sounds like we are living in Haiti. Well, that what they want you to think now - that we are broke - that there is no wealth in America. That we must go on austerity measures just like they did to Argentina in the 1970s when Milt Friedman and his gang raped that country with this same austerity talk.

That’s called cognitive dissonance. When what you are hearing them say simply doesn’t jive at all with the facts as we all know them.

There is not a reason in the world for the USA to be on any austerity program. There is no reason to be closing funding for education, or gypping teachers, or pulling back Medicaid. We have more money, and more wealth generating capability than anywhere else on the planet! Ahhh, but if you want it all to be held in the hands of just 1M people or so, then yes, the other 309 million have to go on austerity programs.

This is the brainwashing at work. Watch the Bernays piece and see how it is being implemented today through the so-called “media.”

No, we are not stupid. But yes, some of us have fallen victim to the criminal enterprise known as State Capitalism. Stop blaming the victim, and start identifying the perps!

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, April 14, 2011 at 6:18 pm Link to this comment

What
Drives Views on Government Redistribution and Anti-
Capitalism: Envy or a Desire for Social Dominance? In
it he reports:

*******

Talk about so biased it’s worthless.  A LAW professor writes on economics and sociology, starts with a phony false premise that set up as a straw man and we are supposed to take this DRECK as anything but laughable?

What is it with the Right-wing that they think a title after a name makes someone an expert on something he/she knows NOTHING about?  It’s like the list of “100 Scientists” who question Global Warming.  I found one I know on that list: He is a MEDICAL DOCTOR who runs a kidney dialysis unit and is an avid fan of Sarah Palin, Laura Ingraham, Rush Limbaugh, and every other fascist ideologue. WTF makes HIM any more of an expert on Global Warming than my mailman?

“Envy or a Desire for Social Dominance?”????? Talk about a pre-disposition based on bias!

How about a “desire” for social justice and the end to manipulation of laws and power to benefit the few at the expense of the many?

John M is clearly an inexperienced version of GRYM.  Posts obvious crap that is easily shown to be crap.  The scary thing is he probably actually BELIEVES this is real and legitimate scholarship.

More’s the pity.

Report this

By Textynn, April 14, 2011 at 6:14 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

A vote for Obama is a vote for the Banking cartel/ Fed Reserve debt machine/ Wall Street elite.. period. The banks are central to what is wrong with this country.

Wall street = Major Corporations and For Profit War Machine/ Controllers of Energy Technology etc ...Heeelllllllllllllllooooooooooooooooooooo.

Answer: Clean Energy, vote counting protection, National and State banks run by government. End the Fed. Universal health care. Any candidate not discussing all of this is not the answer. Obama lied about all of it. He has more than fooled us Once…

Report this

By Don Levit, April 14, 2011 at 5:39 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Shenonymous:
I agree with much of what you said.
I am curious if you believe it was ethical to use the SS trust fund as a way to pay for current expenses?
The same shenanigans is happening with Medicare, and hard to believe, the federal retirees’ trust fund.
Yes, when the federal retirees’ trust fund is tapped, it’s the same financial process as paying for all expenditures, whether in trust or not.
I can provide the reputable government citations, if you or anyone is interested in reading them, to support my statements.
I agree with you that the system (as long as it is not inherently corrupt) is not as important as how its leaders and well-to-do act.
If they continue to act like animals, preserving what’s best for me and my family, number one, we will continue our financial decline.
In Judeo-Christian terms, God made man last.  Why?  Because we are created in His image, and are the only creatures who have free will, and can choose between good and evil.
Chasidic Jews believe in order to earn our position as created last, saving the best for last, we have to act less instinctively and more ethically.  We are to be holy as God is holy.

Currently, we are acting no better than cockroaches.  And, according to Chasidic jews, we are even lower than the cockroaches for they were created before us.
Don Levit

Report this

By DigThis, April 14, 2011 at 5:20 pm Link to this comment

“By John M, April 14 at 8:38 pm Link to this comment

Northwestern University School of Law professor James
Lindgren publidhed a paper March 15th titled What
Drives Views on Government Redistribution and Anti-
Capitalism: Envy or a Desire for Social Dominance? In
it he reports:

compared to anti-redistributionists, strong
redistributionists have about two to three times
higher odds of reporting that in the prior seven days
they were angry, mad at someone, outraged, sad,
lonely, and had trouble shaking the blues. Similarly,
anti-redistributionists had about two to four times
higher odds of reporting being happy or at ease. Not
only do redistributionists report more anger, but
they report that their anger lasts longer. When asked
about the last time they were angry, strong
redistributionists were more than twice as likely as
strong opponents of leveling to admit that they
responded to their anger by plotting revenge. Last,
both redistributionists and anti-capitalists
expressed lower overall happiness, less happy
marriages, and lower satisfaction with their
financial situations and with their jobs or
housework.
Arnold Kling thanks Tyler Cowen for the cite and
adds: “Apparently, the phrase “angry left” contains a
redundancy.”
Read more at the Washington Examiner:
http://washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-
confidential/2011/04/why-angry-left-
redundant#ixzz1JX37DPgr”


lol.  Pseudo-science with its own political agenda.  Classic.  Although I think there is a point to be made that the left has been betrayed and therefore feels rightfully indignant.

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, April 14, 2011 at 4:51 pm Link to this comment

As a liberal I do believe there is a place for capitalism, but with
heavily and enforced regulations.  It is the system that will
encourage creative individuals unlike socialism that depresses
everybody except the corrupt central committee managers. 

But Teabagger Paul Ryan shows characteristics of libertarian
conservatives, right-winger Republicans.  And the Republicans,
like mechanized robots, are awkwardly bowing deeply to the
younger energy that the hoarding and parsimonious Teabaggers
bring to their tiresome cyborgian corporate ass-kissing old bones. 

I believe also, CJ, the economy isn’t so bad as generally believed, and
that sentiment needs to be made prevalent among the population by
saying it loudly and enough times to as many people who vote so that it
finally sinks in over the political evangelism that has been practiced
religiously by the Republicans to brain wash the easily influenced.  They
do know the power and hype of religion to instill neuroses in the public. 
The Republicans, above all others, know how to generate angst and
foreboding and panic in individuals who seek others in their same
condition for solace and unification.

Chicken Little’s fear that the sky is falling is the metaphor that
something needs to be held up or it would all come crashing down. 
That small particles of worry will mushroom into an entire universe of
disaster.  That is what the Republicans preach and by all conscious
accounts hope will happen.  They would like to see the entire economy
bludgeoned to a bloody pulp as specified in the Paul Ryan Teabagger
aka Republican Budget Plan as well as making the senior population
smaller by pulling their safety Medicare and Social Security rug out from
under them as de facto murder, and crucify all the social programs for
the underprivileged. 

Yes, capitalism is ruthless, it has no feelings, why should it?  It is
an economic methodology.  It is unemotionally fearsome and there is
no reason it ought to be otherwise. It deals with and exchanges
unimaginable sums of money.  But those who say the economy isn’t so
bad as generally believed must be aware that it is capitalism that drives
this nation’s “not so bad” economy.

The problem is that capitalism, since it has no feelings, can be
commandeered by the detestably greedy.  But so can socialistic
economies and have been through history.  People under socialism
suffered more than any who live under capitalism can imagine. That is
not to pit one economic system against another as they both have their
negative sides and both have virtues.  The solution is to combine them,
merged into socialized capitalism where regulations as monitored by
the people themselves puts the brakes on the self-servers.  Yes the
Mondragon was/is a good example, as are many credit unions where
the members more or less own the establishment.  I’ve belonged to a
credit union for more than 30 years and they had no problems during
the financial crunch, and they even lowered interest rates on loans if
someone has a history of on-time repayments.  I was a surprised
recipient of this benefit.  Well there does need to be more talk, that is,
debate about the entire possible economic system the population most
advantageously should install.

It is indeed true that the reason Social Security in particular is almost
bankrupt (in 14 years or so?) is because government agencies have
been tapping the fund for years for the things already noted by others,
the war, the war, the war, baby.  If they were made to pay it back,
transfer the funds back into SS, it would still be a healthy program. 
ITW’s three steps looked highly workable and Cyderman’s strategy looks
good too.

And 5 yups that the admen are the only ones who can win short term,
but they also are needed to get out the word as a few have already
stated.  Ed Schultz does a fairly good job getting out the word.

Report this
John M's avatar

By John M, April 14, 2011 at 4:38 pm Link to this comment

Northwestern University School of Law professor James
Lindgren publidhed a paper March 15th titled What
Drives Views on Government Redistribution and Anti-
Capitalism: Envy or a Desire for Social Dominance? In
it he reports:

compared to anti-redistributionists, strong
redistributionists have about two to three times
higher odds of reporting that in the prior seven days
they were angry, mad at someone, outraged, sad,
lonely, and had trouble shaking the blues. Similarly,
anti-redistributionists had about two to four times
higher odds of reporting being happy or at ease. Not
only do redistributionists report more anger, but
they report that their anger lasts longer. When asked
about the last time they were angry, strong
redistributionists were more than twice as likely as
strong opponents of leveling to admit that they
responded to their anger by plotting revenge. Last,
both redistributionists and anti-capitalists
expressed lower overall happiness, less happy
marriages, and lower satisfaction with their
financial situations and with their jobs or
housework.

Arnold Kling thanks Tyler Cowen for the cite and
adds: “Apparently, the phrase “angry left” contains a
redundancy.”

Read more at the Washington Examiner:
http://washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-
confidential/2011/04/why-angry-left-
redundant#ixzz1JX37DPgr

Report this
Gary Mont's avatar

By Gary Mont, April 14, 2011 at 2:08 pm Link to this comment

This is all so very disheartening.

Watching the world’s greatest civilization slowly slip into the sea is so much sadder than I’d imagined it would be. Its a lot like watching a tobacco addict lifting his oxygen mask to take a haul off his cigarette.

But the inability of the American people to see what is plainly right in front of them guarantees that the end of America will be painful and like a cancer victim, slow and ugly.

What does Obama have to do?
Wear a Nazi uniform?
Do a Sig Heil at the end of his public announcements?

He has literally carried out and even expanded all the Bush Administration plans and policies. He has surrounded himself with Captians of Commerce and Capital Criminals.

Matters not. Americans perceive what they’re told to perceive, so Obama is a Democrat who wants to be re-elected, so that’s why he buddies up to the right wingers….. that’s what you’re being told and that’s what you’re dutifully repeating. Pathetic.

There is truly no hope at all, if you people cannot get it through your heads that Government, regardless of its label, or professed purpose, has but one function. To make sure the wealthy can exploit you at will, profittably and comfortably.

Until you realize that there is no right and left in government - that there are no enemies among governments - that these governing bodies are a pure expense which gives nothing back at all, save pain and confusion, poverty and war - there is nothing you can do to stop the slow parasitic wasting of the global public for multinational profit.

I asked, how does one spread the word once the word has been establsihed, pertaining to a concerted public effort to take america back from the domestic terrorits who now occupy the offices of control.

The only answer - pay the ad agencies that are currently publishing propaganda, to spread the word.

Utterly hopeless.

I can only hope that the demise of the American Nation will send a message to the rest of the world, because the American Public is obviously incapable of seeing the evidence that surrounds them every day and thus, of preventing disollution, or even reversing the damage.

Report this
Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, April 14, 2011 at 1:59 pm Link to this comment

Now if Bush had talked everyone into sending their social security money to Wall Street, I suppose with the market drop in 2008 Wall Street would have needed a much bigger bale out?

So it seems the people of America pay extra mandatory taxes into to social security, medicare and unemployment,  but the manipulators in Washington have taped the till to support their buddies in the Military Complex or subsidize big oil, big anything plus now they made corporations people too, only difference seems corporations do not pay taxes, social security, Medicare or for unemployment, except for their American employees, which seems to constantly be much lower numbers every day!

This whole budget game is nothing but a illusion for the sake of drama, while they tap the till, so we need to worry about planned parenthood, illegal aliens and gays?

Do they use real money for their campaigns?

Report this

By Don Levit, April 14, 2011 at 1:31 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Felicity wrote:
Two years ago, The SS trust fund was $two and one-half trillion.  Today it’s $4 trillion.  Of course, whatever trillions the trust fund is to the good has been quickly replaced with T bonds, which are government debts.
By way of deception, dissembling, and dissimulation, our politicians have managed to blame us for EXPECTING that the hard-earned money that we have contributed to our government retirement fund (SS) is ours to collect on retirement.  Our expectation is unfounded?
Felicity:
You seem to have a good grasp of what the trust fund is really composed of.  By lending the excess FICA dollars to pay for current expenses, the trust fund had lent away the principle you supposedly put in.  In addition, the interest credited to the fund was in the form of debt, so the entire trust fund is filled with phantom money.  To tap the trust fund, as we have the last few years, it is the same process as if the trust fund didn’t exist.  It’s the same way we pay for battleships -  out of current revenues and debt.  In the case of Social Security, it is paid by increasing the amount of debt held by the public.
There is a huge disconnect between how the government views your contributions and how you and millions of others do.
The FASAB, the accounting advisor for the federal government, considers your contributions as nonexchange transactions.  That means, you are compelled to pay in, but the government pays you back only out of the goodness of its heart.  In addition, future Social Security and Medicare benefits are considered level 4, the lowest obligation of the government to fulfill.
I can provide excerpts and links from reputable government web sites to support my statements, for those who are interested.
Don Levit

Report this

By Don Levit, April 14, 2011 at 12:28 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Felicity wrote:
Two years ago, the SS trust fund was two and one-half trillion.  Today it’s $4 trillion.  Of course, whatever trillions the trust fund is to the good has been quickly replaced with T Bonds, which are Government debts.  By way of deception, dissembling,and dissimulation, politicians have managed to blame us for EXPECTING that the hard-earned money that we have contributed to our Government retirement fund(SS) is ours to collect on retirement.
Our expectation is unfounded?
Felicity, this is beautifully worded.  To add or subtract one word would take away from its important meaning.
You do understand that what the trust fund is left with is Treasury debt, including the interest.
This means that in order to tap the trust fund, as Congress has done the last few years, it must do so as it pays all other expenditures, whether in a trust fund or not.  Due to our defivits, debt held by the public is the choice, so it increases.  The “good” news is that intragovernmental debt decreases by the same amount, keeping the total debt the same.
There is a huge disconnect between how the government views your retirement money and how you (realistically) do.
The FASAB is the accounting advisor for the federal government.  It views your FICA contributions as nonexchange transactions.
What that means, is that you are compelled to pay in, but the government is not compelled to pay out.  If they do, it is only out of the goodness of its heart. 
Future Social Security and Medicare benefits are considered level 4 obligations, the weakest for the government to fufill.
I can provide reputable governmental links and excerpts for all who want to see them, to support my statements.
Don Levit

Report this

By DigThis, April 14, 2011 at 11:17 am Link to this comment

Fighting Fire With Fire

The most effective way to get the word out is the old fashioned way:  Hire PR firms to saturate the nation with marketing campaigns on behalf of the people.

As a matter of fact, I think this could be set up through powerful, yet reputable ad agencies such that millions of people could donate a dollar or two at a time.  Cut out the middle men.

Report this

Page 1 of 2 pages  1 2 >

 
Right 1, Site wide - BlogAds Premium
 
Right 2, Site wide - Blogads
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 
 
 
Right Skyscraper, Site Wide
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 

A Progressive Journal of News and Opinion   Publisher, Zuade Kaufman   Editor, Robert Scheer
© 2014 Truthdig, LLC. All rights reserved.

Like Truthdig on Facebook