Tags: Bush tax cuts, Nick Hanauer, Republicans, Tax, the 1%, United States
…or would you starve, would your kids suffer and be denied an education, would you lack healthcare if you paid more taxes? Or is that what you’re hoping for the 99% of us that didn’t have the foresight to be born into wealth and privilege?
Raise Taxes on Rich to Reward True Job Creators: Nick Hanauer
Dec. 1 (Bloomberg) — It is a tenet of American economic beliefs, and an article of faith for Republicans that is seldom contested by Democrats: If taxes are raised on the rich, job creation will stop.
Trouble is, sometimes the things that we know to be true are dead wrong. For the larger part of human history, for example, people were sure that the sun circles the Earth and that we are at the center of the universe. It doesn’t, and we aren’t. The conventional wisdom that the rich and businesses are our nation’s “job creators” is every bit as false.
I’m a very rich person. As an entrepreneur and venture capitalist, I’ve started or helped get off the ground dozens of companies in industries including manufacturing, retail, medical services, the Internet and software. I founded the Internet media company aQuantive Inc., which was acquired by Microsoft Corp. in 2007 for $6.4 billion. I was also the first non-family investor in Amazon.com Inc.
Even so, I’ve never been a “job creator.” I can start a business based on a great idea, and initially hire dozens or hundreds of people. But if no one can afford to buy what I have to sell, my business will soon fail and all those jobs will evaporate.
That’s why I can say with confidence that rich people don’t create jobs, nor do businesses, large or small. What does lead to more employment is the feedback loop between customers and businesses. And only consumers can set in motion a virtuous cycle that allows companies to survive and thrive and business owners to hire. An ordinary middle-class consumer is far more of a job creator than I ever have been or ever will be.
Theory of Evolution
When businesspeople take credit for creating jobs, it is like squirrels taking credit for creating evolution. In fact, it’s the other way around.
It is unquestionably true that without entrepreneurs and investors, you can’t have a dynamic and growing capitalist economy. But it’s equally true that without consumers, you can’t have entrepreneurs and investors. And the more we have happy customers with lots of disposable income, the better our businesses will do.
That’s why our current policies are so upside down. When the American middle class defends a tax system in which the lion’s share of benefits accrues to the richest, all in the name of job creation, all that happens is that the rich get richer.
And that’s what has been happening in the U.S. for the last 30 years.
Since 1980, the share of the nation’s income for fat cats like me in the top 0.1 percent has increased a shocking 400 percent, while the share for the bottom 50 percent of Americans has declined 33 percent. At the same time, effective tax rates on the superwealthy fell to 16.6 percent in 2007, from 42 percent at the peak of U.S. productivity in the early 1960s, and about 30 percent during the expansion of the 1990s. In my case, that means that this year, I paid an 11 percent rate on an eight-figure income.
One reason this policy is so wrong-headed is that there can never be enough superrich Americans to power a great economy. The annual earnings of people like me are hundreds, if not thousands, of times greater than those of the average American, but we don’t buy hundreds or thousands of times more stuff. My family owns three cars, not 3,000. I buy a few pairs of pants and a few shirts a year, just like most American men. Like everyone else, I go out to eat with friends and family only occasionally.
It’s true that we do spend a lot more than the average family. Yet the one truly expensive line item in our budget is our airplane (which, by the way, was manufactured in France by Dassault Aviation SA), and those annual costs are mostly for fuel (from the Middle East). It’s just crazy to believe that any of this is more beneficial to our economy than hiring more teachers or police officers or investing in our infrastructure.
More Shoppers Needed
I can’t buy enough of anything to make up for the fact that millions of unemployed and underemployed Americans can’t buy any new clothes or enjoy any meals out. Or to make up for the decreasing consumption of the tens of millions of middle-class families that are barely squeaking by, buried by spiraling costs and trapped by stagnant or declining wages.
If the average American family still got the same share of income they earned in 1980, they would have an astounding $13,000 more in their pockets a year. It’s worth pausing to consider what our economy would be like today if middle-class consumers had that additional income to spend.
It is mathematically impossible to invest enough in our economy and our country to sustain the middle class (our customers) without taxing the top 1 percent at reasonable levels again. Shifting the burden from the 99 percent to the 1 percent is the surest and best way to get our consumer-based economy rolling again.
Significant tax increases on the about $1.5 trillion in collective income of those of us in the top 1 percent could create hundreds of billions of dollars to invest in our economy, rather than letting it pile up in a few bank accounts like a huge clot in our nation’s economic circulatory system.
Consider, for example, that a puny 3 percent surtax on incomes above $1 million would be enough to maintain and expand the current payroll tax cut beyond December, preventing a $1,000 increase on the average worker’s taxes at the worst possible time for the economy. With a few more pennies on the dollar, we could invest in rebuilding schools and infrastructure. And even if we imposed a millionaires’ surtax and rolled back the Bush- era tax cuts for those at the top, the taxes on the richest Americans would still be historically low, and their incomes would still be astronomically high.
We’ve had it backward for the last 30 years. Rich businesspeople like me don’t create jobs. Middle-class consumers do, and when they thrive, U.S. businesses grow and profit. That’s why taxing the rich to pay for investments that benefit all is a great deal for both the middle class and the rich.
So let’s give a break to the true job creators. Let’s tax the rich like we once did and use that money to spur growth by putting purchasing power back in the hands of the middle class. And let’s remember that capitalists without customers are out of business.
(Nick Hanauer is a founder of Second Avenue Partners, a venture capital company in Seattle specializing in early state startups and emerging technology. He has helped launch more than 20 companies, including aQuantive Inc. and Amazon.com, and is the co-author of two books, “The True Patriot” and “The Gardens of Democracy.” The opinions expressed are his own.)
To contact the writer of this article: Nick Hanauer at Nick@secondave.com .
To contact the editor responsible for this article: Max Berley at email@example.com .
Find out more about Bloomberg for iPhone: http://m.bloomberg.com/iphone/
Tags: Bush tax cuts, Federal Insurance Contributions Act tax, Glass–Steagall Act, MichaelMoore, Occupy Wall Street, Thanksgiving, United States, Wall Street
No, not marriage. Read on.
Where Does Occupy Wall Street Go From Here? …a proposal from Michael Moore
Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011
This past weekend I participated in a four-hour meeting of Occupy Wall Street activists whose job it is to come up with the vision and goals of the movement. It was attended by 40+ people and the discussion was both inspiring and invigorating. Here is what we ended up proposing as the movement’s “vision statement” to the General Assembly of Occupy Wall Street:
We Envision:  a truly free, democratic, and just society;  where we, the people, come together and solve our problems by consensus;  where people are encouraged to take personal and collective responsibility and participate in decision making;  where we learn to live in harmony and embrace principles of toleration and respect for diversity and the differing views of others;  where we secure the civil and human rights of all from violation by tyrannical forces and unjust governments;  where political and economic institutions work to benefit all, not just the privileged few;  where we provide full and free education to everyone, not merely to get jobs but to grow and flourish as human beings;  where we value human needs over monetary gain, to ensure decent standards of living without which effective democracy is impossible;  where we work together to protect the global environment to ensure that future generations will have safe and clean air, water and food supplies, and will be able to enjoy the beauty and bounty of nature that past generations have enjoyed.
The next step will be to develop a specific list of goals and demands. As one of the millions of people who are participating in the Occupy Wall Street movement, I would like to respectfully offer my suggestions of what we can all get behind now to wrestle the control of our country out of the hands of the 1% and place it squarely with the 99% majority.
Here is what I will propose to the General Assembly of Occupy Wall Street:
10 Things We Want
A Proposal for Occupy Wall Street
Submitted by Michael Moore
1. Eradicate the Bush tax cuts for the rich and institute new taxes on the wealthiest Americans and on corporations, including a tax on all trading on Wall Street (where they currently pay 0%).
2. Assess a penalty tax on any corporation that moves American jobs to other countries when that company is already making profits in America. Our jobs are the most important national treasure and they cannot be removed from the country simply because someone wants to make more money.
3. Require that all Americans pay the same Social Security tax on all of their earnings (normally, the middle class pays about 6% of their income to Social Security; someone making $1 million a year pays about 0.6% (or 90% less than the average person). This law would simply make the rich pay what everyone else pays.
4. Reinstate the Glass-Steagall Act, placing serious regulations on how business is conducted by Wall Street and the banks.
5. Investigate the Crash of 2008, and bring to justice those who committed any crimes.
6. Reorder our nation’s spending priorities (including the ending of all foreign wars and their cost of over $2 billion a week). This will re-open libraries, reinstate band and art and civics classes in our schools, fix our roads and bridges and infrastructure, wire the entire country for 21st century internet, and support scientific research that improves our lives.
7. Join the rest of the free world and create a single-payer, free and universal health care system that covers all Americans all of the time.
8. Immediately reduce carbon emissions that are destroying the planet and discover ways to live without the oil that will be depleted and gone by the end of this century.
9. Require corporations with more than 10,000 employees to restructure their board of directors so that 50% of its members are elected by the company’s workers. We can never have a real democracy as long as most people have no say in what happens at the place they spend most of their time: their job. (For any U.S. businesspeople freaking out at this idea because you think workers can’t run a successful company: Germany has a law like this and it has helped to make Germany the world’s leading manufacturing exporter.)
10. We, the people, must pass three constitutional amendments that will go a long way toward fixing the core problems we now have. These include:
a) A constitutional amendment that fixes our broken electoral system by 1) completely removing campaign contributions from the political process; 2) requiring all elections to be publicly financed; 3) moving election day to the weekend to increase voter turnout; 4) making all Americans registered voters at the moment of their birth; 5) banning computerized voting and requiring that all elections take place on paper ballots.
b) A constitutional amendment declaring that corporations are not people and do not have the constitutional rights of citizens. This amendment should also state that the interests of the general public and society must always come before the interests of corporations.
c) A constitutional amendment that will act as a “second bill of rights” as proposed by President Frankin D. Roosevelt: that every American has a human right to employment, to health care, to a free and full education, to breathe clean air, drink clean water and eat safe food, and to be cared for with dignity and respect in their old age.
Let me know what you think. Occupy Wall Street enjoys the support of millions. It is a movement that cannot be stopped. Become part of it by sharing your thoughts with me or online (at OccupyWallSt.org). Get involved in (or start!) your own local Occupy movement. Make some noise. You don’t have to pitch a tent in lower Manhattan to be an Occupier. You are one just by saying you are. This movement has no singular leader or spokesperson; every participant is a leader in their neighborhood, their school, their place of work. Each of you is a spokesperson to those whom you encounter. There are no dues to pay, no permission to seek in order to create an action.
We are but ten weeks old, yet we have already changed the national conversation. This is our moment, the one we’ve been hoping for, waiting for. If it’s going to happen it has to happen now. Don’t sit this one out. This is the real deal. This is it.
Have a happy Thanksgiving!
Tags: Atlantic Ocean, god, Jesus, Karl Marx, Paul Krugman, RedState, republican, United States
By Jonathan Bines
Talking to a Republican can be frustrating. Often, it seems like they are speaking an entirely different language—and in many cases, they are! For this reason, and in the hopes of facilitating cross-party dialogue and mutual understanding, I have compiled what I believe to be the first comprehensive Republican-to-English dictionary, featuring words commonly used by Republicans, and followed by their English translations. Alphabetized for your convenience:
- America (United States of): A country located in the northern Western Hemisphere that is always #1 and is always right.
- Bible: A sacred text that provides incontestable answers when thumped, pounded, or misinterpreted.
- Birth Certificate: An official birth record, traditionally required of all US Presidents (regardless of race) since 2008.
- Capitalism: A system of economic organization that has never been attempted without government interference.
- Christian: Accurately informed.
- Christmas: A holiday commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ, now rarely observed due to persecution by atheists.
- Compromise: (uncommon) A form of political suicide.
- Coast (East): A very bad coast of the continental United States.
- Coast (West): Another really inexcusable coast.
- Communism: The belief that the government should help people.
- Constitution (U.S.): The hallowed founding document of the United States, the text of which must be interpreted strictly and amended immediately.
- Corporations: Really big people who are overtaxed.
- Deficits: 1) Fiscal shortfalls which are incurred by Democrats and threaten to bankrupt the country, or 2) Fiscal shortfalls which are incurred by Republicans and don’t matter.
- Democrat: A political party.
- Election: A method of selecting representatives, the fraudulence of which may be inferred from the outcome.
- Elitist: Qualified.
- Endangered Species: Animals that have it coming.
- Europe: A vague landform east of America’s Atlantic Ocean, which is irrelevant and should provide military support whenever we ask.
- Evolution: A theory of human origins that’s been wrong since ‘way before they ever proved it.
- Extremist (Liberal): Espousing or adhering to political beliefs that are held by no more than a majority of Americans.
- Fact: Information obtained from a RedState comment board.
- Forest (National): Trees that have it coming.
- Gut: Region of the body from which decisions should be made.
- Homosexuality: A membership-only lifestyle organization that perpetuates itself through youth recruitment.
- Hitler: A man to whom it would be inappropriate to compare President Obama (in spite of the many uncanny similarities).
- Jesus: Charismatic religious leader and son of God; born in Bethlehem in the year 0. His beliefs include love, charity, enhanced interrogation, privatized healthcare, elimination of the estate tax, and the right to carry concealed semiautomatic weapons.
- League (Ivy): an association of eight Eastern universities and colleges, the lack of a fancy education from which qualifies a candidate for public office.
- Liberal: A person who should be rounded up and shot but not really, wink, wink.
- Marxism: A political and economic philosophy developed by Karl Marx and promulgated by Paul Krugman.
- Media (Mainstream): The leftist mouthpiece, from which you won’t hear things.
- Medicare: A fraudulent, socialistic boondoggle that is sacrosanct.
- Mexicans: Brown people who have it coming.
- Mexican-Americans: See “Mexicans”
- Mountaintops: Ancient rock formations that have it coming.
- Muslims: More brown people who have it coming.
- Native Americans: Red people who need to get over it.
- News: The holy Fox Network
- Obamacare: A Federally-mandated policy to address the national oversupply of grandparents through euthanasia.
- Organic: Eaten by lesbians.
- Park (National): Land set aside for future rape.
- Party (Tea): A grass-roots movement of patriotic Americans fighting for the principle of “No Taxation With Representation.”
- Poll: A survey used to determine, to within a margin of error, just how many Americans are right.
- Poverty: The condition of having inadequate financial or material resources due to not trying hard enough.
- Propaganda: The politically motivated dissemination of biased information, opinion, or data through its publication in the New York Times.
- Punishment (Capital): The legally authorized killing by the State of someone who is really, truly, probably guilty.
- Racism: A form of discrimination that typically happens in reverse.
- Regulation: Rules issued by a government agency for no reason.
- Ronald Reagan: A fictional character based loosely on President Ronald Reagan.
- Scientist: A person who employs a rigorous system of observation, experiment, measurement, and verification to perpetuate his godless left-wing agenda.
- Social Security: A redistributionist Ponzi scheme that is sacrosanct.
- Socialism: An economic system invented by FDR, which takes from the good and gives to the evil and lazy.
- Taxes: Levies which are imposed by the government, and which increase revenue the more they are reduced.
- Torture: A method of interrogation that does not rise to the level of torture.
- Terrorist: A person to whom a person who threatens to destroy the U.S. economy unless his demands are met should not be compared.
- Unbiased: Giving equal weight to both sides of the looking glass.
- Wealthy (the): People who earned every penny.
- Up: A direction which, depending on circumstances, is down.
- Warming (Global): A mysterious human-caused increase in the Earth’s terrestrial, atmospheric, and oceanic temperatures that not only isn’t happening, but furthermore isn’t caused by humans.
- Welfare: A government program to distribute Cadillacs to unwed mothers.
- Yes: (unknown; no translation possible)
- Perry Raises Doubts About Obama Birth Certificate (nicolemaschke1.wordpress.com)
- Conservative Romney alternatives vie for Iowa edge – Topix (nicolemaschke1.wordpress.com)
Tags: Christian, Christianity, Dominionism, Jesus, prayer, Pro-choice, Religion & Spirituality, School prayer, Stephen Colbert, United States
I refuse to capitalize christian/christianity (unless it begins a sentence). It’s not that I don’t respect your right to believe as you please, in fact if you are truly a christian I respect your beliefs and would like the same in return. What I don’t respect, and in fact resent, is the level at which christianity is ever increasingly being shoved down the throats of those of us who don’t happen to subscribe. Christianity is used as a vehicle to dictate cessation of behavior that you deem inappropriate, censor anything that offends you, and deny equal rights to those who aren’t christian…in your eyes. I’m tired of your incessant insistence that we are a christian nation! We are NOT! If you want a christian nation I suggest you all hire a great big boat, I hear Noah’s Ark isn’t being used, get on it, and start your own country.
I am offended when political events and public proceedings start with a prayer or a religious benediction. I don’t think that our president should take the oath of office on a bible or that we should ever know or care what the private beliefs of any elected official might be. The sky could literally be falling on your heads, and if the only person on the planet with the ability to hold it up happened to be pro-choice on abortion, you’d let the sky fall.
Organized prayer has no place in public schools, so stop trying to bring it back. The lack of prayer in schools is not responsible for the moral decay of this country; in fact there is no proof there is any moral decay…except that you say so. What you describe as immorality has always existed. The only differences are that now it’s more in-your-face, because of the information age, and there are waaaay more people than there used to be. And if we are going to have a pledge of allegiance to our flag, then let’s go back to the original version. The revised version, fortified with god, causes indigestion (I forgot to mention I don’t capitalize the g-word either).
From the blog, Dover Beach,
“If this is going to be a Christian nation that doesn’t help the poor, either we have to pretend that Jesus was just as selfish as we are, or we’ve got to acknowledge that He commanded us to love the poor and serve the needy without condition and then admit that we just don’t want to do it.”
- Are we a Christian nation? (antwrites.com)
- Is the US a ‘Christian nation’? Should we want to be? (pocketpurposeblog.wordpress.com)
- The Creationism Pledge (dangeroustalk.net)
- The Slide to Perdition (pacificbullmoose.wordpress.com)
Tags: Barack Obama, campaign promises, David Cameron, history, Mitt Romney, President, republican, Rude Pundit, United States
From the Rude Pundit regarding Barack Obama and so relatable on a personal level. You may get a kick out of it whether you agree or disagree with Rude’s opinions.
A “Dear Barack” Letter:
We’ve had some good times over the last few years. Hell, 2008 was one of the most hopeful times in my life. Remember all those rallies and adoring crowds? God, it was wild. I didn’t think I could keep up with you; you were so intense, so passionate. But once we started living together, things changed.
Sure, sure, you brought me flowers, you told me how much you cared, and you moved me in ways that I never thought I’d be moved. You can still do that to this day. But isn’t that the way it is with our lovers? There’s always going to parts of them that we miss. That just shows that you meant something, and that you still do. But I need to do this for the sake of my sanity, my self-esteem.
If you care to know why, let me explain. You started to take me for granted. Almost immediately your eye started to wander. When we’d go out, I’d always think, “I’ll be he’s looking over there at that table to the right.” You told me not to worry about it. You said that I was still your heart and soul.
You made promises you never kept, Barack. And it’s not as if you ever apologized for breaking them. You’d say that we would climb mountains together, but you decided that you’d rather go hunting. “In the future, we’ll climb mountains, don’t worry,” you told me. “We can’t afford it right now.” But somehow, you always found the money for other things. Even the ones you kept were somehow diminished. You said we would build a house. Instead, you got us a trailer. You told me to be happy with a trailer. You took the things I cared about and you said you cared, too. Then you either cast them aside or did the bare minimum to show you cared.
Even now, you’re still making promises, as if you still believe they can come true. They can’t. Not unless you change. Not unless you’re willing to fight for us. But I don’t think you can. I don’t think that’s who you are.
I got into this relationship without any illusions about who you were. I never listened when others told me that you were perfect. I never listened when some told me you weren’t worth my time. I got together with you because I believed in us. You and me. Somewhere along the way, you stopped caring. Somewhere along the line, you started believing in others more than you believed in me.
I loved you as a smart, principled man. I worked at this relationship. Even when we fought, I still sought out the good in you. Now, finally, after watching you have affair after affair, saying each time that it was just a one-time thing, I have to allow myself to feel bitter and angry and more than a little foolish. And I have to do that by myself.
I’m sure many of my friends will be upset. “What are you going to do now?” they’ll say. “You’re not going to date Mitt or Michele, are you?” What that implies is that I should settle, that I should compromise myself and my dreams just to keep us together. No one deserves that kind of power. And they never considered a third option between staying with you and being with someone else. They never considered that I could just be alone.
So this is a separation, and I’m sure you’ll be dating again quickly. But I need a break. I need to remember why I loved you. I need to miss you. I need to see if I miss you. Sure, sure, you’ll say, I’m being a drama queen, that nothing has changed, that I don’t live in the real world, that everything you’ve done has been for me, that I just don’t understand what it’s like to live with the pressure that you have. No, but I have to live with the results of what you do. And after you’re done, in 2013 or 2017, you’ll still be a rich moderate conservative and I’ll still be a middle-class liberal trying his best to clean up all the messes.I’m gonna pack up my stuff and head out now. I wish you well, truly, for everyone’s sake. But I think if there’s anything you can take away from this, it’s simple:
It’s not me. It’s you.
The Rude Pundit
- Stupid optimism (brobrubel.wordpress.com)
- Devil Take the Hindmost As Public Policy: Thoughts on Joblessness and Need [Mike the Mad Biologist] (scienceblogs.com)
- Quote of the Day: What Barack Obama Forgot About Change (themoderatevoice.com)
Tags: Barack Obama, Bush tax cuts, Congressional Budget Office, Republicans, Robin Hood, Tax, Tax cut, Taxation, United States, Washington D.C.
I think we all know the story of Robin Hood: the guy who wore green tights, lived in the forest with his band of merry men, robbed from the rich and gave to the poor. Somewhere along the way that whole concept got mixed up and what we are faced with now is rich hoods robbing the poor. Yesterday I posted an article by Mark Karlin, of The Buzzflash Blog, about the puppet masters who pull the strings of our elected marionettes.
America is the land of opportunity. If you have enough money you can buy anything, including power, packaged neatly as an elected official. The richer you are the higher the office you can buy. If you are that rich, it might be worth remembering that it was most likely the people of U.S., and our consumer driven culture, who made your lavish life possible. Yet here we are in the big ship of state, sinking in a turbulent sea of debt, and your solution: throw the poor, the elderly, and the disabled overboard rather than be taxed and/or contribute to the country that made you wealthy. I have just two words for you, but since this is a pg rated blog I am not going to print them, but they rhyme with buck moo.
I understand there are exceptions, and every one among the uber rich isn’t a greedy bastard who can never have enough money, power or influence; but there seems to be no shortage of the aforementioned. You are so terrified by the prospect of the expiration of the Bush tax cuts that you would rather see the country take from those who can least afford it, see people go without food, shelter, or medical care, than pay what, to you, is a drop in the bucket. Again, buck moo.
You keep telling us you need those tax cuts in order to create jobs. I’ve asked this before and I’ll ask it again. You’ve enjoyed those tax cuts for some time now and just where are all those those jobs you promised to create? I guess you never really came out and said you were going to create American jobs, now did you? Our bad; when will we ever learn to be more specific in how we word things.
I just had a thought. One way to reduce government spending would be to eliminate the IRS and just have the common folk send their money directly to the greedy bastards.
This morning I was listening to the Diane Rehm show on NPR. One of her guests was Ron Elving, the senior Washington editor for NPR news who was of the opinion that had the Bush tax cuts expired earlier the country would not be faced with the huge deficit and we wouldn’t be as far up that nasty creek without a paddle as we now find ourselves. He urged people to call our representatives and let our wishes be known because those people (the representatives) want to do the best for their constituents. I think that is a load of that creek water I just mentioned.
Do we (the regular people without piles of money) really have representatives? Sadly, with a few exceptions, I think the answer is no. I don’t, for a minute, believe that most of the people on the hill are there because they give a rat’s ass about we, the people. I believe they are there because they wanted a cushy, prestigious career, loaded with perks (like being bought and paid for by those rich guys I mentioned earlier).
I think many Americans are so fed up they would hold demonstrations in Washington, but no one can afford the travel expenses. I think we should, en masse, take our cues from our great leaders and contact our creditors and tell them that unless they raise our credit lines by September 30, we are all going to default on everything we owe to everyone. That would bring the economy to its knees in no time flat, so we now have leverage to play like the big boys and insist on a government bailout. After all isn’t our collective credit rating as important to us as the triple A rating is to our government?
The way I see it we have two separate issues. One is how the government is funded and by whom, and the other is how the funds are spent. As it stands now both systems are broken; it is as if our country is a big game of monopoly being played by a bunch of drunken monkeys. The party’s over. I’m not privy to all of our spending, but in my little world I see so much waste I can only imagine that is just a representative sample of the big picture.
We’ve been in this recession, that feels more like a depression, for a very long time and I don’t see an end in sight. A big contributor to our current situation was the mortgage debacle and the subsequent real estate bubble that popped. Japan experienced a similar real estate bubble burst and a decade later is still in a recession. That does not bode well for any of us.
Most of the world economies seem to be in dire straits these days. My solution. We zero everything out, wipe the slate clean, and start over.
- Getting rid of Bush tax cuts … won’t happen (dailykos.com)
- Joshua Aron: DailyRobinHood: A New Kind of Social Network (huffingtonpost.com)
Tags: Democracy, Federal government of the United States, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Mass media, Rupert Murdoch, United States, White House
It seems nothing really changes.
FDR: “Government by Organized Money is Just as Dangerous as Government by Organized Mob”
MARK KARLIN, EDITOR OF BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT
The hacking of phones and invasion of privacy by the Rupert Murdoch tabloid press has been the subject of articles for years, but it took the unconscionable and illegal extracting and deleting of messages from the mobile phone of a dead British girl to bring the Murdoch empire to its knees.
Murdoch, it appears now, had bought off police, politicians, and who knows who else, as he swaggered across the Western world, creating a false, angry, populist worldview through a vast media empire. The sole purpose of this emotional, incendiary and deceptive narrative was to create governments that supported the plutocracy, not the “rabble” of democracy. The tool to accomplish this was the manipulation of the mass media to ignore facts and create a fictional “frame” that pushed populations toward acceptance of an authoritarian state, one that existed for the benefit of the wealthy.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt knew the danger of a Murdoch controlling, in an Orwellian fashion, the media, and the danger of the likes of the Koch Brothers financing propaganda – through lavish support of think tanks and front “activist” organizations – as well as a government run by corporate lobbyists. Whether it is ownership of the media, concentrated control of the assets of a nation by a few, or de facto corporate governance through campaign contribution leverage on Congress and the White House, Roosevelt warned:
“The liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of private power to a point where it comes stronger than their democratic state itself. That, in its essence, is fascism – ownership of government by an individual, by a group.”
In his second inaugural speech FDR declared:
“We had to struggle with the old enemies of peace – business and financial monopoly, speculation, reckless banking, class antagonism, sectionalism, war profiteering.”
They had begun to consider the Government of the United States as a mere appendage to their own affairs. We know now that Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob.
Never before in all our history have these forces been so united against one candidate as they stand today. They are unanimous in their hate for me – and I welcome their hatred.
How little has changed since those remarks were made in 1936, except there is no FDR in the White House to champion the cause of democracy for those 99 percent of Americans who are not part of “organized money.
- FDR Has A Word Or Two About Taxes – 1936. (crooksandliars.com)
- What does it mean to ‘break up’ media power? | Des Freedman (guardian.co.uk)
- What might FDR have done about the debt limit? (dailykos.com)
- Why did franklin Delano Roosevelt get a memorial (wiki.answers.com)