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Member since: Sun Jul 11, 2004, 07:58 PM
Number of posts: 39,405

Journal Archives

Does anyone take Harry Reid seriously when he "threatens" to curb filibusters?

He has mentioned it again about GOP obstruction of Obama nominees.


IMF plan to stabilize economy, end gov't debt, and neuter bankers' power

Mayer Rothschild, uber-banker, once said, ""Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws," and truer words were never spoken nor more accurately describe why we are in such a financial mess and why it is so impervious to political activism.

Private bankers make our money out of thin air by loaning money that they don't have that we pay back with the sweat of our brow both for our own debts and the debts of our government that has to borrow the created money from them too.

The ability to make money out of thin air means we could never hope to match their political campaign donations and certainly not offer politicians the kind of jobs they get working for the banks and Wall Street as lobbyists, consultants, lawyers, CEO's, and do nothing board members when they leave office.

Shouldn't banks be businesses like any other instead of our masters?

The history of debt in this article is must read as well.

The trick to this proposal is getting from here to there.

One could slash private debt by 100pc of GDP, boost growth, stabilize prices, and dethrone bankers all at the same time. It could be done cleanly and painlessly, by legislative command, far more quickly than anybody imagined.

The conjuring trick is to replace our system of private bank-created money -- roughly 97pc of the money supply -- with state-created money. We return to the historical norm, before Charles II placed control of the money supply in private hands with the English Free Coinage Act of 1666.

Specifically, it means an assault on "fractional reserve banking". If lenders are forced to put up 100pc reserve backing for deposits, they lose the exorbitant privilege of creating money out of thin air.

The benign side-effect of their proposals would be a switch from national debt to national surplus, as if by magic. "Because under the Chicago Plan banks have to borrow reserves from the treasury to fully back liabilities, the government acquires a very large asset vis-à-vis banks. Our analysis finds that the government is left with a much lower, in fact negative, net debt burden."


GRAPH: Can the public tell fake from real scandal? Impeachment polls Nixon v Clinton v Baby Bush

Considering that the Wall Street Journal article that I got the original graphic from was about the only mainstream media source to discuss impeaching Baby Bush his numbers are even more impressive.

Republicans don't improve their electoral chances playing the scandal card, but it does help their short term strategery of obstruction.

Let's hope the public reacts the way they did to the Republican impeachment of Bill Clinton's penis and give BOTH chambers of congress to the Democrats.

And then let's hope the Democrats actually use those new majorities to do more than agree with conservative stupid ideas.

Since Repubs are cranking up big scandal machine, any Dems could mention to shut them up?

Democrats have given Republicans and especially Republican presidents a pass on some serious, serious shit.

Nixon doing back door negotiations with the North Vietnam to undercut LBJ in the 1968 election, the October Surprise, criminal charges for Iran Contra, vote rigging and vote suppression in several elections, violating as many parts of the Geneva Convention as possible in the invasion of Iraq, including lying (not being mistaken) about Iraq being a threat, and approving and even orchestrating torture at the highest levels, no bid contracts in Iraq, wiretapping CONGRESS and on and on.

Democrats thanks for all this has been a sharp, pointy, steel tipped cowboy boot in the ass, and Republicans squealing like a stuck pig every time Democrats do something they would enjoy doing more.

Is it paying off for Democrats to leave this stuff untouched?

If not, what could they go after that would give them the most bang for the buck?

Will Obama piss away the rest of his presidency sucking up to Repubs and playing the scandal game?

The article on Huffington Post about Obama musing about going "Bulworth" prompted this.

The guy has done some good in office (cue THE LIST posters), but for the most part, he has spend his whole first term and first part of his second trying to prove to Republicans that he doesn't really like Democratic ideas either.

I'm not an idiot. It ain't about ideology or bad "strategery." Like the Republicans, he's playing to the big money people, and if he didn't, he wouldn't have made it as far as the White House, and wouldn't have been allowed to stay there.

But since the Republicans are going to threaten to impeach him no matter what, why not earn it by doing something good and daring the GOP to undo it?

Figure out what the most is he can do with executive orders, or in foreign policy to set things right, and watch the right wing wither like the Wicked Witch in the Wizard of Oz when they threw water on her.

Hell, he could even do some good with just his declassification power: declassify the Saudi pages of the Joint Congressional Inquiry into 9/11 and destroy the very last shred of GOP claim to be the better party on defending America.

Set the Justice Department after the vote riggers, and felon voter purgers, or hell even Wall Street. Treat those who destroyed the world economy with the same legal creativity he did some crank in Yemen whose blog posts MIGHT have inspired POTENTIAL terrorist acts.

He would be a hero and make it easier for Democrats to hold onto the White House and retake both chambers of congress.

Will he do any of that or will he continue to tape a kick me sign to his own ass before bending over in a room full of Republicans?

Guatemala Chamber of Commerce says genocide conviction "will will discourage foreign investment"

Democracy Now has been covering the genocide trial of U.S.-backed Guatemalan dictator Efraín Ríos Montt, but more damning than any details of any atrocity are the reactions of the business community and what it reveals about how they use governments like Montt's, not just in the past but today.

Most macabre is the recent quote by security guards at a mine who said protesters didn't realize that the mine "generates jobs" (a Republican talking point) before they opened fire on the protesters.

Most people don't care about communism, socialism, free market fundamentalism, or whatever. They just want decent working conditions, to be able to take care of their family, and have their employer subject to the rule of law if they don't provide the other two.

That is obviously intolerable to corporations in their dealings in the Third World, and increasingly in America and the developed world.

Eventually Americans are going to realize that the companies they work for see us the same way they do Bangladeshi garment workers and Indian miners in Guatemala, and we will change things.

If not, look forward to being buried in rubble during of sixteen hour shift or being shot for not respecting "job creators" in the near future.

One of the remarks that Pérez Molina made in response to the verdict against Ríos Montt—he was echoing the comments of the American Chamber of Commerce, which represents the U.S. corporations in Guatemala—was to say that this verdict will discourage foreign investment in Guatemala. It’s a very revealing comment, because foreign companies, when they come into a country and are looking to invest, they want some laws to be enforced, like the laws on contracts, and they want other laws not to be enforced, like the labor laws and the laws which stop them from murdering their employees if they try to organize unions. In the ’80s, the leaders of the American Chamber of Commerce described to me how they would sometimes turn over names of troublesome workers to the security forces, and they would then disappear or be assassinated. Fred Sherwood was one of the Chamber of Commerce leaders who described that. And now, with this verdict, it seems that Pérez Molina and the corporate leaders and the elites in Guatemala, in general, are worried that they may have a harder time killing off workers and organizers when they need to.

And it’s especially relevant right now because there’s a huge conflict in Guatemala about mining. American and Canadian mining companies are being brought in by the Pérez Molina government to exploit silver and other minerals. The local communities are resisting. Community organizers have been killed. There was a clash in which a police officer was killed. So Pérez Molina has imposed a state of siege in various parts of the country. And just the other day, the local press printed a wiretap transcript of the head of security at one of these mines, in this case the San Rafael mining operation, where the security chief says to his men, regarding demonstrators who were outside the mine, he says, "Goddamn dogs, they do not—they do not understand that the mine generates jobs. We must eliminate these animal pieces of [bleep]. We cannot allow people to establish resistance. Kill those sons of [bleep]." And the security people later opened fire. This is the way foreign companies operate, not just in Guatemala, but around the world. I mean, it’s this kind of non-enforcement of law that made possible the Bangladesh factory collapse that killed over a hundred workers. And now they’re worried in Guatemala—


Dim view on Emanuel education policy, Tribune poll finds

Source: Chicago Tribune

Chicago voters hold a dim view of Rahm Emanuel's stewardship of public education after a tumultuous year that featured a teachers strike and the mayor's push to close many neighborhood elementary schools, a new Tribune/WGN-TV poll shows.

Disenchantment with Emanuel's education policy is particularly acute among minority voters, and that's helping drive up negative views of the mayor's overall job performance as he reaches the middle of his first term this week.

Nearly 6 of 10 surveyed said they disapproved of Emanuel's attempt to downsize elementary schools, while just a third approved. Those numbers closely mirror negative feelings about Emanuel's approach to public education, which he has labeled a top priority.

The general dissatisfaction was even greater among those with children in public schools — three-fourths disapproved. But even a majority of voters without so personal a stake expressed reservations about the way the mayor has dealt with Chicago Public Schools.

Read more: http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/ct-met-rahm-emanuel-schools-0512-20130511,0,4437967.story

Rahm is showing the outer limits of the "lesser of two evils" approach of corporate Democrats is wearing thin with the public.

It's little comfort when your kids school is closed to think that a Republican would have closed more schools and privatized the remainder for the benefit of wealthy donors faster than Rahm would.

When will the Democrats get back to giving us an actual choice instead of a corrupt echo?

Or will it take progressives coming together in one new party to their left?

WHITE HOUSE PETITION: support Elizabeth Warren's bill on student loans at same rate banks get 0.75%

You could also sign a similar petition your senators and congress rep via this Moveon petition and get this more visibility by signing the Moveon.org presidential petition as well as the direct White House petition.

If this gets 100,000 signatures, the White House MUST RESPOND to it, so send this to two of your friends, especially if they are buried under student loan debt.

[font size=3]support Elizabeth Warren's bill to give student loans same interest rate banks get from Federal Reserve: 0.75% [/font]

With some student loan rates set to double on July 1 -- from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent -- Warren's bill would reduce student loan interest rates to 0.75 percent, opening the Fed's discount window to students.

This should be done to all existing student loans as well as new ones going forward.

This would free up money that would flow back into the economy in consumer buying, including things like first time home-buying.

Wall Street banks are getting those low rates to help them recover from the consequences of their own irresponsible and fraudulent behavior that crashed America's and the world's economy.

The only crime of most college students and graduates is wanting an education and a middle class standard of living.

We deserve at least as good a deal as big banks are getting.

Sign at http://wh.gov/JNiU

RAVITCH: Ed Sec Arne Duncan BOOED by education researchers

Researchers in any field aren't exactly the most rowdy people, so this is really saying something.

Real research and teachers' experience are being ignored for top down corporations before kids policies backed business buzzwords and BS.

The quote from Mayor Bloomberg, who is using his money to force corporate friendly education reform and get himself elected and re-elected sums up the state of our democracy. When asked how the people could hold him accountable, he said, "They can boo me at parades."

A "Let them eat cake" statement like that tells you how profoundly corrupt our political system has become and how drastic a correction it needs.

Obama had window of opportunity to change this with true reforms with the support of the people, but he squandered it.

Eventually, the broad middle class (or what's left of it) is going to figure out how to wrest power from the dangerously morally bankrupt financial elite, and they might not have as much left as they would have if they had let (or told) Obama to do more to fix the mess they made.

I did not go to the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association in San Francisco, so was not aware of what is described in this post. Jennifer Jennings says that Arne Duncan was booed when he spoke, and she apologized to Secretary Duncan for the behavior of her fellow researchers.

Why was Secretary Duncan booed, and should AERA (or anyone else) apologize for the booing?
[font color=darkred]
Booing is the behavior of the powerless. Educators are angry--and Jennings knows this--because of the top-down, authoritarian way in which Duncan has imposed policies that are bad for children, ruinous for teachers, and harmful to the quality of education. Jennings also knows that Duncan holds all the power. Educators may write blogs, opinion pieces, books, and research studies, and they will be completely ignored by Duncan. To say the least, he is uninterested in dialogue and unwilling to change his hardened belief that his policies are successful, no matter what anyone says.[/font]

In New York City, our mayor proudly announced that the public should hold him accountable for improving the public schools. After he spent $100 million or so to win a new term, someone in the press asked Mayor Bloomberg how the public could hold him accountable. He answered: "They can boo me at parades."


WHITE HOUSE PETITION: End corrupt corporate driven education reform

I'm going to post this to the White House petition site, not because I think they will do what it says, but because I want to hear their response to it and it's not like any reporter is going to ask about this.

I made some slight edits and posted it.

You can sign it here http://wh.gov/zd0Y

The education "reform" agenda of billionaires and Wall Street is driving teachers out of the job and discouraging college students from becoming teachers at an alarming rate.

For profit charter schools that get taxpayer money do worse twice as often as better than normal public schools.

Repetitive standardized testing takes time away from learning and only profits testing companies and is used to punish schools and teachers rather than help.

Do for public school kids what the best private schools do for your own daughters: reduce class size, and give teachers the freedom to figure out how best to meet children's education needs instead of listening Wall Street sharks who want our kids' education to be the next bubble they pump and dump. Put our kids ahead of your big campaign donors.
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