Friday, November 25, 2011

Big Chunks of Truth

One major problems that is facing America is the utter refusal or cognitive inability of the Republican Congress (and the Republican Party in general) to recognize what is going on in this country of ours. Most Republicans dismiss the 99% movement as merely undeserving citizens that are too lazy to work, and they fail to acknowledge, at least publicly, that this notion is far from the truth.

The 99% movement is comprised of a cross section of American people. The "movement" includes students, many who have spent 10's of thousands of dollars on education and are unable to find gainful employment that will enable them to survive and pay off their debt. It is also made up of working people that are barely able to make ends meet due to the economic stagnation coupled with the ever rising costs of energy, food, and health care. And it is becoming more apparent that the inflation is due to market manipulations by the Wall Street boys. The coffee market is a prime example of the manipulation I'm alluding to.

Regardless of what they do many working folks, middle class families, and recent graduates are unable to make any progress. The only ones that are able to save and prosper are those at the top. Unlike prior groups in our history, ones that became dependent on government handouts, the 99%ers, as a whole, have done everything right and they are stymied and it is not paying off for them. Ironically, it is many of the Republicans that now seek to prosper through the government.

Over Thanksgiving dinner, a longtime friend of mine, who works as a building contractor, said to me that the problem stems from the fact that there are too many people and not enough jobs. While we were debating, his wife was talking to her family via the internet. It made me think of a story I heard decades ago. Roger Smith, a former chairman of General Motors, implemented the use of computer controlled robots in one of the GM plants. When it was up and running, Smith invited Walter Reuther, head of the United Auto Workers, into the plant to observe.
As the two stood in the booth above the assembly line floor and watched the activity below, Roger Smith asked, "Aren't you impressed by the efficiency of the robots?"
Reuther replied, "Yes, Mr. Smith, but how many Chevrolets will they buy?" 

Progressives recognize that rebuilding America's infrastructure and a return to manufacturing is a necessary beginning. And that this cannot be accomplished without serious involvement by our government and the implementation of a progressive tax system. And then it goes back to Wall Street and the New Derivative Thinkers and the Republican "Private Sector" Vampires.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Q&A with the Latest Republican Presidential Nominee: Barney the Dog

Poor Will: Most thinking people believe that the American economy and job creation represent the most important issues that face our country. Taking into consideration global competition and the impact of technology, can you briefly outline your jobs proposal and tell us what measures you would implement to bring down the unemployment rate in this country?
Barney the Dog: Ruff Ruff
Poor Will: Barney, you have expressed that you support further tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations that are systematically exporting jobs, the expansion of undefined investment credits and loopholes, and also the complete closure of most government regulatory agencies.
Barney the Dog: Ruff Ruff
Poor Will: Barney, you especially don't like the Departments of Commerce, Energy and Education, but you also expressed some misgivings about the Consumer Protection Agency and the FDIC insurance.  
Barney the Dog: Grrrrr
Poor Will: OK, we can discuss vouchers and Social Security at another time.
Poor Will: Barney, what are you doing? Good Lord, I almost stepped in it!

I believe that it is painfully clear, at this point, what is behind the Republican agenda. It has been awhile since America has employed the "trickle-up" theory of economics, though it was suggested by Ben Stein back in 2008, after the crash. Maybe, just maybe, this approach might work.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

99% Tea Free

It's all well and good in this country of ours to advocate the principles of our Founding Fathers. However, the Tea Party is as much about individual rights and democracy as the Nazi Party (National Socialist German Workers' Party) was about socialism and workers' rights. The Nazi Party, by all accounts, was a fascist military dictatorship and was opposed to workers' rights, socialism, and individual rights and liberties period.

The economic agenda of the Tea Party is not compatible with democracy, the free market, and individual rights; and the social agenda of the Tea Party is not compatible with its economic agenda.

Put simply, the regulatory, government and tax policies, including the disbursement of government funds, demanded by the ultra right wingers, seek to extrapolate monies from middle and lower classes and further concentrate that wealth at the top, creating a financial aristocracy in America. Further, their policies seek to have the middle class pay for this process as it ceases to be. The emerging plebeian/slave class will be forced to pay for its own enslavement through taxes, criminal business practices and the police and military. The right wing seeks "to have its cake and eat it too."

Under the Tea Party vision of America, their social agenda of no abortion/birth control will not only put additional strain on the limited food, fuel, and healthcare resources, but will serve to keep the masses young, strong, dysfunctional and uneducated. And there will be no government programs of any sort for them. Few among the masses will live to a ripe old age.

I can hear many of you saying that this scenario is science fiction. And I truly hope it is. We must institute a  very progressive tax rate. It is clear the Bush tax cuts did not create jobs or stimulate the economy. To the contrary, look at the record. We must close the tax loopholes so the wealthy pay somewhere close to their fair share. We must regulate derivatives- instruments that nearly destroyed this country- as well as predatory lending and financial practices. And finally, we must provide greater opportunities and protections for American workers- the source of our country's strength and the real heroes of America.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Do Republicans Want to End Democracy?

Never before in American history has there been so brazen an attempt to destroy American democracy. The wealthy and global corporations have and are continuing to use misconstrued interpretations of the principles that this country was founded upon, to rationalize profiting  from the destruction of this country. At least the robber barons built railroads and steel mills and, looking at the big picture, were much different than the "New Derivative Thinkers" of  today.

The Tea Party- a slick well funded invention of the upper classes- partially as a reaction to the election of a Black President, and also as a force to continue the destructive policies of the Bush administration that served the agenda of the 1%, appeared magically and permeated the consciousness of Americans. Using wealth to control the media, and propaganda techniques of historical dictatorships, the American people were and continue to be hoodwinked.

With America focused on this "grassroots" diversion, Republicans continued their traditional assault on democracy in Washington with their lobbyists, and the army of newly elected Tea Party "foot-draggers" (pun intended).

I truly hope that with the inception of the 99% movement, America is finally waking up. At least one of the perpetrators, Eric Cantor, is starting to get nervous.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Plan 999 from Outer Space

A flat tax is nothing new. Forbes proposed a flat tax- I believe it was 12%- during his run for the presidency some years ago. Few took him seriously. But, the fact that anyone would take this proposal seriously, and the fact that the main street media, Fox News excepted, is covering and analyzing it, makes me ashamed to be an American.

All sitting presidents, both Republicans and Democrats, including Reagan, and especially Eisenhower, understood the fairness and necessity of a graduated income tax. The vast majority of Americans hold as truth the notion that those who profit the most from America, should pay the most.

The notion of a flat Federal sales tax is insane, pure and simple. Without discussing elasticity of demand, there is an obvious difference between the impact of a sales tax and an income tax. The working classes and poor must spend most or all of their income to survive, unlike the upper classes. So, in effect, this tax burden will fall squarely on the backs of the lower classes. The upper classes will loose incentive to spend and create jobs because of the tax. They're doing it now without the tax. Now flash back, during George Bush's tenure, consumer spending accounted for 70% of all economic activity. The tax, especially without deductions to encourage spending, will disincentivize spending except for those that must to survive. Welcome to the jungle.

Purely as a didactic exercise, Will, poor and lame, proposes a 15-30-60 graduated flat tax. Households will pay a 15% flat rate on incomes up to 50,000$. This should appease Tea Partiers. A 30% rate will be applied to that portion of income that is above 50,000$ and below 200,000$. And a 60% rate will be applied to that portion of a household's income that is above 200,000. With some slight cuts and modifications to Social Security and Medicare as well as greater regulations and oversight to prevent guys like Rick Scott from ripping off the system; and without a federal sales tax, we are on our way. Heck we might even be able to make less defense cuts. My Boston Terrier is barking with joy.

In closing, the Wall Street protest has given this old guy some hope; something I haven't had since Stewart's Rally to Restore Sanity. And the innocuous, unbridled passion of the rallies makes me reminisce. They are focused on the institutions that, with the help of the oil patch boys and Republicans, played a major role in bringing about the state we Americans are in.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Ugly Americans

The new American heroes are not teachers or doctors, nor even captains of true industry- though there was some coverage of the life of Steve Jobs; but rather repo men, pawn brokers, and people fighting over abandoned storage lockers. The predatory practices of the New Derivative Thinkers, not only have influenced Republican candidates like Rick Perry, but they have trickled down to Main Street.

The Tea Party philosophy of no government- except for a government funded by the middle class to protect the interests of the super rich is not democratic and certainly not free market. What Tea Party candidates advocate is destruction of the free market. To keep a football game fair we need referees. To keep our roads safe and functional, we need traffic signals, speed limits and courts and policemen to enforce the rules.

In order to maintain the values and ideals that were intended by our Founding Fathers, and to provide equal opportunity, and insure the preservation of "certain unalienable Rights" for all Americans, which includes the right to vote, we need government and a fair judicial system.

There is an old saying: "The Pen is mightier than the Sword." The wealthy and global corporations understand this well, witnessed by their control of the media.The medium for the 99 percenters is through their numbers and their right of assembly. I truly hope that the protests we are witnessing signal that the Revolution of Sanity in America has taken hold. And I hope that the American people say No More to the current Republican Congress whose mantra is just say no to progress and the American way. As a people we must unite and work together towards our common good if we are to sustain our beloved country.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

"Denial ain't just a river in Egypt."

The quote is from Mark Twain. It appears that many, too many, Americans refuse to accept that our economic system has been corrupted and that our democracy has been co opted. The great values that this country was founded upon : hard work, self-reliance, truth, justice, and liberty for all; are values that define us as a people. To acknowledge, or even ponder the notion, that these "values" have been diluted or lost is beyond the comprehension of most true Americans.

We 99 percenters are partially to blame. Many of us have taken our democracy for granted. We failed to stay abreast of political issues. Often it was inconvenient to vote. We took our middle class prosperity and freedom for granted. Some of us became selfish and we felt entitled.

All the while we were "luxuriating" in our malaise, the super rich and global corporations were very busy buying the media and control of our political system. In anticipation of our discontent, they disseminated propaganda to confuse us. At the same time, the new Wall Street derivative thinkers, were working diligently on how to steal our savings and retirements, both private(401K's) and public(Social Security), our homes; and fundamentally our futures and the futures of our children.

As an American, a student of political economy, and a person that extensively studied Marx and rejected his philosophy, I find it difficult to believe that our economic system is broken. I recently read an article that discussed group health insurance for small and medium-sized businesses. Companies are facing on average a 12% rate increase next year. And that rate increase is based, not on usage, which has gone down overall, because Americans cannot afford the co-pays and deductibles; but on anticipation by the major carriers that the economy would be better by this point and people would be able to afford the increase!

Philosophers differ greatly on the value of historical analysis. However, behavioral psychologists, tell us that the best way to predict future behavior is to look at past behavior. The economic policies- or lack there of- of both Cleveland and W. Bush are remarkable similar. Reagan began his presidency in the same manner but changed course in his second term and was bailed out by the tax increases of Bush Sr. Cleveland led us into the Great Depression where we remained until World War Two. "W" led us into the Great Recession where we remain today. The Tea Partiers will led us into Apocalypse.

The New Conservatives (RINOs) believe that it is their god-given right to do anything to obtain wealth and power, regardless of how many Americans are destroyed and what it does to this country as a whole. They do not possess the values that this country was founded upon and sustained with. These are truly precarious times for all of us.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

9/11

It is the ten year anniversary of 9/11 and, since Obama was elected President, there has be less media focus on terrorism. Bush's infamous color code warning system has faded into oblivion. Obama's mission that led to the assassination of Osama bin Laden, was executed while he was telling jokes at the White House Correspondents' Dinner.

Republicans have been focusing on tax cuts for the wealthy and global corporations, and the acquisition of absolute power. The debt issue, though a truly serious issue, appears to be their way of attempting to destroy the middle class. Democrats and moderates appear to be genuinely concerned about jobs and maintaining the standard of living of the middle class by the creation of jobs through shared sacrifice, greater taxes and government stimulus.

The war on terror is still a critical issue but it is best fought, not on Fox News, but behind the scenes by the intelligence agencies using covert and psychological tactics, much in the same manner the execution of bin Laden was carried out. In this manner, politicians and the American people can focus on the critical domestic issues at hand.

It is extremely important to realize that America's strength in the world is a result of the economic strength of its people and the freedoms we have, things Republican don't really care about. Remember what Perry said about Romney in the recent GOP debate. He stated that Dukakis (A DEMOCRAT) created 3 times as many jobs as Romney did as Governor of Massachusetts.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Are Republicans PART of the Problem?

The principal fallacies of the Right Wing Spin Machine of this Millennium are entangled in dishonesty, selfishness and utter refusal to examine the big picture.  It is great to be in favor of the the historical American values of self-reliance and hard work, but impossible for these values to produce economic security or social justice in a society where there is no longer equality of opportunity and the power elites are rapidly creating an unlevel playing field so that their children can continue to rule the world while brilliant poor children are turned out to crime or hard labor.
It is a shame that the Republican party has turned it's back on it's great presidents like Lincoln, who articulated in the Gettysburg Address the idea that our country would never measure up to the ideals expressed in the Declaration of Independence as long as we allowed a wealthy class to own a class of slaves; and like Teddy Roosevelt, who understood that keeping government small required government to keep the mega corporations and monopolies of his day (many of which were small by today's standards) less powerful than our nation's government.  Republicans have even turned their back on the not-so-great Republican Presidents like Eisenhower, who at least understood that the way to pay off war debts was to use the graduated income tax, and that the people who profited the most from the "wartime stimulus" that ended the last Depression should be willing to repay the most to put our government back on a sound financial footing.
It's a screwy world out there, and getting scarier all the time, and unfortunately the educational system and free press are under severe economic pressure at a time when we have never needed them more as a society.  And that is not to say that the lies and distortions of Fox News are any worse than the "Entertainment Tonight" mentality of the other major broadcast networks.
In order to solve a problem, you must be aware of the causes of the problem. You can not wish problems away by worshiping with snakes, citing platitudes that may or may not have been appropriate 100 years ago, or fortifying your own position, to "ensure" your own survival no matter how dire things get. And certainly not through the self-delusion of Republican archaism.

My father taught me that cliches are absolute truths, essentially distilled wisdom from the ages. He told me that I should never refute them and should try to never use them. In this case I am going cite one. If you are not part of the solution, then you are part of the problem.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Slick Rick Perry

In the illustrious tradition of Bush and Cheney, the Republicans present America with yet another Presidential candidate, Rick Perry. Included in Perry's endeavors is the insurance scam with UBS that involved "betting" on how long retired school teachers would live. We can all thank God that this derivative scheme did not come to fruition. Slick Rick is in bed with the banks and predatory lenders. And he is salivating like Pavlov's dog, at the thought of getting his hands on taxpayers' money, so much so, that, at least overtly, he is turning his back on some of his supporters, the ones who worship with snakes and believe Japan's recession is a result of intercourse between the Emperor and Sun Goddess.

Perry epitomizes the the notion of the Republican "private sector" vampire in its purest form. Please forgive the Texas analogies, but in the tradition of the new derivative thinkers,  Republicans view Social Security and all government monies and funds the same way they view an oil field. And they seek to extrapolate the monies with a huge windfall "profit". And they view the American people as cattle in a stock yard.

It is very important that the Republican party is seen for what it has turned into: an evil and corroding thread that is killing America.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Republican Pod People


The Republican Party seems to be suffering from the "Palm Beach Trust Boy Syndrome", where the grandfather was an energetic and creative guy who carved out an empire with bold vision. The father was a reasonably competent guy who kept the empire in play while diluting its original purpose and intent. And the son becomes a useless entitled butt head who pisses away his inheritance and trades off the reputation his grandfather established without understanding what it took to build an empire, and without having anything to offer the world in his own right.


Barry Goldwater is credited by many political historians as the founder of the Conservative movement in America politics. I disagree with much of his political philosophy, but I believe his views were held genuinely. And some of what he believed I also hold as true. The Godfather of Conservatism said: "I am a Conservative Republican, but I believe in democracy and the separation of church and state. The Conservative movement is founded on the simple tenant that people have the right to live life as they please as long they don't hurt anyone in the process."  A very ambiguous statement and volumes could be written on what constitutes hurt.
He clarifies: "I don't have any respect for the Religious Right. A woman has a right to an abortion."

Today we have Tea Party candidates, as well as candidates like Gingrich, who appear to be amoral and, upon close examination, really stand for nothing. What they profess to stand for is more often then not, contrary to what they do and the way they live. Most have not served in the military, like their "fathers" Dole and McCain, and view war as a board game. Honestly, didn't you get that feeling about Bush? They view the American people as numbers on a spreadsheet. What they do or say, and what happens to that spreadsheet, really doesn't matter. And they appear to have no awareness or understanding of any of this. Bachmann is talking about $2 per gallon gasoline after she becomes President. It appears that the only amity that all Republicans share in common, when you sort out all the gobbledygook, is their allegiance to the mothership. Sorry, I mean to the acquisition of power and the almighty dollar.

What really is frustrating for thinking people, is the awareness of the fact that it doesn't have to be this way. The problems of America can be solved with intelligent effort and compromise through the democratic process, over the course of time.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Instant Cake

One of the major factors hurting our country and making the American political system dysfunctional is the pervasive notion of instant solutions. The internet, despite its many, many virtues, is a major contributor to this component of American thinking. I spent four years in college, as did many of my peers. Besides studying subject matter in depth, over the course of time, with eminent authorities, who had demonstrated merit over the course of time; I also developed values, understandings, appreciations, and skills. Today, with online schools, a bachelors or masters degree can be earned in half the time or less. One might question what real value these degrees have.

As a young man, I remember being at the helm of a fishing boat while a oil tanker,  in the starboard top quadrant, was bearing down on us. The captain told me to yield the right of way because it would take the tanker over a mile to change course.

In this instant culture we live in, I think most people are not cognizant of this fact. In government, just like in life, meaningful change requires time and effort.  It cannot be accomplished by a buffoon with a chalkboard in 60 minutes.

Since the election of Barack Obama, the Tea Party has introduced a stream of instant candidates. Most of them, despite being enamored by their own self-image, are merely incompetent and lack values and understanding. But the powers behind them are truly dangerous. It has been some time since Tea Partiers or mainstream Republicans have concerned themselves with jobs for Americans, the issue that they campaigned on, and the issue they used to boondoggle the American people. But their instant solution to the deficit in our country,  will destroy the middle class, and ultimately our country. Any thinking person cannot dispute this.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

"Keep you doped with religion and sex and tv..."

Warren Buffet, an Obama supporter, recently stated that America is engaged in class warfare. Tea Partiers downplay this notion. However, the Republicans have made it abundantly clear that their sole reason for being is to maintain the gains in wealth and power that the 2 percenters achieved under the Bush administration. And they are willing to destroy America in order to achieve that end.

If it is 20 miles into the woods, it is 20 miles out of the woods. And it was the Republicans that marched us into the woods. And now they want to burn the forest down with us in it!

A major reason the deficit is continuing upward, is because of high unemployment. Corporations are doing extremely well and sitting on piles of cash. If you put Americans back to work, they will pay more taxes, and bring down the deficit. Taxes must be restored to Clinton levels and loopholes must end. It is insane for a teacher or a carpenter to pay more in taxes than General Electric. And to steal benefits from workers that have paid into the funds for decades, to bring down the deficit, so the rich don't have to pay taxes, is just plain evil. And, maybe not so ironically, by doing so, it will increase the deficit further.

The deficit must be addressed gradually. To do otherwise, without a question, will create ramifications that are hard to imagine. Information is surfacing that was withheld by the Bush administration. The economic damage done was far greater than we previously realized.

Samuelson to the contrary, supply is adapting to demand. Prices for goods and services in America remain artificially high because of manipulations that include firing workers and cutting production capacity.

By using wealth and power, that was entrenched during the Bush administration, to disseminate propaganda, lies, and fear, the Republicans have effectively co-opted American democracy and broken the capitalist system. Let us not forget that the French gave us the Statue of Liberty. And I will leave it at that.

If Wisconsin is representative of America, even moderately, the 2012 elections can't get here soon enough.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Blasphemy

Tea Party Republicans lack much experience, that is either experience in politics or business, and they have not exhibited merit over the course of their lives.They appear to be infatuated, even intoxicated, by their own image. They speak in platitudes. They want small government. They want no regulation. They want no taxes. Like Rep. West from Florida, they do not want to pay their bills. And they want to oust Obama.

They appear to have absolutely no understanding of economic complexities or the ramifications of what they are doing. Some of them rationalize this abhorrent behavior by stating that it is God's will. Essentially this is saying that their untested, undisciplined, inexperienced will is God's will.

The debt crisis illustrates this. Americans better realize quickly, that these people are not merely an annoyance but are truly dangerous.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Do Republicans See Themselves as the "Chosen Ones?" Apocalypse Now!

Any sane person possesses at least a cursory understanding that a default by our country will have catastrophic effects on our country. If our country's credit rating goes down, interest rates on our debt will go up, the "jobless" recovery will be halted, and middle/working America will know pain and suffering that has not been seen for generations. Ronald Reagan understood this as he raised the ceiling 12 times.

Bachmann  recently told Social Security recipients not to worry. The default will be no big deal and America has plenty of money and will continue to issue their checks.

In essence, she is right. Social Security is solvent. But if Rand Paul, Eric Cantor, and the New Conservatives get their way, the capital accumulated in Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid for decades through the work of middle/working Americans will be extrapolated and redistributed to global corporations and the super rich in the form of tax breaks and obscene subsidies to fund their corporate jets and regal lifestyles. All this without the creation of any jobs for the American workers that toiled for decades to fund the capital the Republicans are extrapolating. Fair and balanced.

George Bush set the ball rolling and 9/11 couldn't have happened at a better time. The Tea Party, comprised of minions, fools, and employees, either current or aspiring, of the global corporations and the super rich, began this process. Using 60's tactics, these patriots, with their own unique ideologies and fundamental beliefs, attacked our democracy on the populous front and in the media, using convoluted logic and a "take what you want and leave the rest" approach to the US Constitution. At the same time, traditional Republican interests attacked in Washington and the mainstream media with lobbyists and money.

The wealthy (mainstream Republicans) may have accumulated enough cash and gold to be unaffected; or perhaps not. Politics makes strange bedfellows. History will show if the merger we have witnessed destroys our country.

Polls show that America is coming around from the Bush hangover. Now Republicans are saying polls don't matter and Americans don't know what's good for them and the country. The solution lies in Keynesian economics.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

And the Red Queen Lost Her Head

Of the Holy Republican candidates, that include Trump, Palin, and Huckabee, it appears that Michelle Bachmann is the only one that is running for office; or at the very least, using the platform to propagate right wing insanity.

NBC News recently revealed that despite the fact that Bachmann publicly denounces Medicare, her husband receives approximately $137,000 per year from Medicare to run his clinic and $24,000 in government grants to train the clinic employees.

The Bachmanns also receive $260,000 in farm subsidies, get payments from the State of Minnesota for their foster children, as well as her federal paycheck. The Tea Party Caucus Leader is a prime example of small government and "standing on your own two feet". However, if her name was Anindo instead of Michelle, she would be seen for what she truly is, an opportunist of little fiscal conservatism and much government welfare with absolutely no concern for America and its people.

Though I have more of a chance of getting hit by space debris when I walk out my front door tomorrow, then Bachmann does of becoming President, it must be noted that her district has, by far, the highest foreclosure rate in Minnesota. Romney really doesn't have anything to worry about, especially if she partners with O'Donnell. Nor does Obama, for that matter.

However, if we are to restore America, Americans must pass back through the looking-glass.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Democracy and Business

I believe that one of the things that is confusing Rand Paul and the rest of the New Conservatives, besides the fact that many of them have ascended to positions of power without merit, is that they believe that the two concepts are interchangeable.

The purpose of a business is to make a profit for its shareholders. The purpose of a democracy is to ensure that all citizens have a representative voice in the governance of the country. The Tea Partiers understand this as they speak loudly about not having taxation without representation. And though America is taxed moderately, when compared with all other industrial nations, taxes are everywhere, and by all levels of government.

The most important function of a democracy, and there is not one business in the world that even remotely considers this, is to ensure that all citizens are treated fairly according to the dictates and evolving laws as prescribed by the constitution of the democracy. In America it is "liberty and justice for all." Profits on campaign contributions are not a consideration.

One might argue that because of the inherent conflict between the objectives of a democracy and a business, it might be unconstitutional to run America like a business. That is not to say that the deficit shouldn't be addressed. But in doing so all citizens must make sacrifices. And the wealthy and global corporations that have been hoarding cash and avoiding taxes, must contribute a great deal to ensure that the opportunity that they were afforded, will be provided for the next generations.

I believe many Americans cease or fail to remember unpleasant events.  Perhaps some events are reanalyzed in the media until they disappear, Santayana to the contrary. Not many Americans seem to remember September 2008. Freewheeling, unregulated, free-market capitalism, aided by the the massive appropriation of Clinton's surplus by the Bush administration, almost destroyed the economy of America. Do you really want to put these people in charge of our democracy?

Rand Paul recently committed a Freudian slip when he stated on CNN that middle Americans are going to have to suffer. Quickly, he covered suffer with sacrifice.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Is There a Solution?

Recently someone asked me if I thought Ronald Reagan was a good president? And I answered them somewhat sarcastically that, after he fulfilled his promises to the wealthy and the deficit soared out of control, he did a splendid job. He did eliminate long and short-term capital gains taxes- created one rate to hinder tax shelters- and did away with investment credits. Ironically, the loopholes he plugged did, to a limited degree, create jobs and opportunity.

Today we have an entirely different situation. The tax laws that are designed to give corporations and the super rich incentives to invest in America and create jobs, have been co-opted by a generation of self-interested derivative thinkers to the point where it has become anti-tax stupification.

Today US corporations that were born here, and sustained by our country are rewarded by the tax system for investing abroad and, at the same time, closing American facilities and firing American workers. Corporate leaders get capital gains on stock acquired by them in compensation plans, again using tax laws that are designed to create jobs and stimulate the economy, without creating any jobs, except for an au pair or maid.

The real tragedy is that some who recently assumed positions of power, as well as many who aspire to positions of power, have little understanding about what's going on; and liken what's happening now to what was happening during the Reagan era.

If right wing Republicans were seriously interested in job creation, rather than having savings of the rich "trickle down" into contributions for their campaigns and attack ads designed to eliminate Democrats and moderate Republicans from the American political scene, they would require every corporation to disclosed what percentage of their stock float is actually being invested as "capital" in building factories and research facilities, buying equipment and training workers in the US.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

"Now We Are Engaged in a Great Civil War,"

The title for this post is from Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. I do think the New Conservatives, at least some of them, believe that middle class/ working Americans are responsible, themselves, for "being behind the power curve", in a precarious position, and in danger of destitution. The problem is that they are out of touch with reality. As stated throughout this blog, the dynamics of America and the world have changed drastically on virtually every level. And it is either stupidity or evil to hold and advocate beliefs and policy that are supported by fallacious premises. And to have such people in a position of power to impose such policy without understanding or merit is insane and the end of "the last, best hope of earth." Again, this quote is from Lincoln referring to America.

Leona Helmsley once said, "We don't pay taxes. Only little people pay taxes..." For the rest of the New Conservatives, the ones' that are conscious of what they are doing: using their wealth to destroy democracy and the middle class, it is almost criminal.

When the bread gets low- food stamps are cutoff- and the gladiators are locked-out- no football- people may come to their senses. And because we live in a democracy, it will be only a matter of time before the passage of a very progressive Federal income tax.

Finally- Tea Party Conservatives love to divert attention from meaningful issues by spending inordinate amounts of time discussing ludicrous, often trivial issues. Perhaps the new House majority should pass a bill replacing the eagle with the vulture as our national bird. True Americans that love, serve and believe in this country are merely meat for the New Conservatives and the financial aristocracy. 

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Power Without Merit

All things considered, there are some endeavors that the federal government is capable of administering more efficiently and more cost-effectively than the private sector. Public works, the military and health care are three major examples. The argument that this is not so stems from "private sector" involvement in a non-competitive market in conjunction with the government.

Bush experimented with a private military that included Blackwater, and the costs were astronomical when compared to the effectiveness, which was minimal. And there were some damaging repercussions that are not usually associated with a voluntary army.

Since the inception of Medicare and Medicaid, private sector entities have exploited the systems for profit. And behavior of private sector insurers illustrates that costs will continue to go up and coverage will continue to go down for the vast majority of Americans. If you take the leash off the pit bull, it is insane to believe that it will attack less. 

The arguments of the New Conservatives are rooted in realities that were at least partially true in American history. The notion of "Go West" to a new territory and stake your claim was a viable option. And throughout much of our history, America was the land of opportunity.

With the country settled, and so much manufacturing lost, we have become a country of information and technology and sales. And much of the technology is designed to reduce, not create jobs. I thank whatever gods maybe that be that Obama had the foresight and intelligence to save the American automobile industry which, incidentally, has repaid the loans and is now leaner and healthier than ever.

With the advent of the Tea Party, it has become apparent that one of the fundamental principles of the Founding Fathers has been thrown out the window by the New Conservatives. Implicit in the formation of America was the notion of merit.

Driven by the Kock brothers, whose BC thought process and wealth come from the same place, the Mesozoic Era, Tea Party candidates pooh-pooh teachers and education, democracy and equality, standards, laws and regulations; and more fundamentally opportunity and fairness. Remember the colonists offered George Washington the crown and he rejected it as fundamentally un-American. And Newt Gingrich recently had a lapse of conscience- probably due to all that education and teaching- when he described the Ryan Plan as right-wing "social engineering".