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Capitalism And Democracy

Is Democracy up to the challenges of this century? Is Capitalism? We’ll look at two great pillars, and the questions now around them.

An Occupy Wall Street protester holds a sign as he marches in Times Square in New York, Saturday, Dec. 17, 2011. Earlier in the day dozens of Occupy Wall Street protesters were arrested as they attempted to enter an Episcopal church-owned lot in Manhattan's Tribeca neighborhood. (AP)

An Occupy Wall Street protester holds a sign as he marches in Times Square in New York, Saturday, Dec. 17, 2011. Earlier in the day dozens of Occupy Wall Street protesters were arrested as they attempted to enter an Episcopal church-owned lot in Manhattan's Tribeca neighborhood. (AP)

At the end of the Cold War, revelers danced on the Berlin Wall and political philosophers announced the end of history.  Capitalist democracy had won.  Forever.  Flash forward a couple of decades and the big capitalist, democratic beacons hardly look like superheroes.

Europe in trouble.  Japan in trouble.  And the United States – the onetime paragon – is struggling to make its system work and work for all.  New challengers have different ways.  Is the future theirs?

This hour, On Point:  Are American democracy and capitalism up to the challenges of this century?

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Gideon Rose, editor of Foreign Affairs. He is a former National Security Council official in the Clinton administration.

Charles Kupchan, Whitney Shepardson senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and a professor of international affairs at Georgetown University.

Highlights

A decade ago, in the aftermath of the Cold War, pundits and strategic thinkers alike were far more certainty that Liberal Democracy would triumph as a world system. “It’s too soon to tell if we’re going through a rough patch or an inflection point,” said Charles Kupchan, a professor of international affairs at Georgetown University.

Now, rival systems, including State Capitalism in China, Political Islam in the Middle East, are offering alternatives, Kupchan noted. “Most surprisingly, we see the industrialized West, the countries at the cutting edge of history – the U.S., Europe, Japan – all stumbling,” he said. He said growing wealth gaps, struggling middle classes, and political dysfunction are key culprits in that stumbling, he said. “Is this a passing moment or is something deeper going on here?” Kupchan asked.

“I am less gloomy,” said Gideon Rose, editor of Foreign Affairs. He said the post-war reconciliation of capitalism and liberal democracy had adapted to challenges in the past and would do so again.

“The reality is that capitalism, while good in the aggregate and in the long term, tends to volatile, unequal, and very divisive in the short-term for different parts of society,” Rose said. The brutal realities of raw capitalism have led to the welfare state, social security and other treads that make up social safety net. Future compromises between the left and the right over the scope of such protections are inevitable.

“The real question is not ‘should we regulate the economy’ or ‘should we have a welfare state’…. The question is: can you do it efficiently, can you do it without killing the goose that gives the golden eggs?” Rose said.

Both Rose and Kupchan agreed that political paralysis was making things worse. “We have a real set of challenges, but we have a political debate and a political culture, that operates on an entirely different level – so that you can’t honestly discuss things,” said Rose

From Tom’s Reading List

You can read Kupchan’s latest article in Foreign Affairs: “A crisis of governability has engulfed the world’s most advanced democracies. It is no accident that the United States, Europe, and Japan are simultaneously experiencing political breakdown; globalization is producing a widening gap between what electorates are asking of their governments and what those governments are able to deliver.”

Here is Rose’s article in the same issue of Foreign Affairs: “In historical perspective, however, the true narrative of the era is actually the reverse — not ideological upheaval but stability. Today’s troubles are real enough, but they relate more to policies than to principles.”

Project Syndicate “Is democratic time too slow to respond to crises, and too short to plan for the long term? At a time of deepening economic and social crisis in many of the world’s rich democracies, that question is highly relevant.”

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  • Roy Mac

    Can just as easily say “business casual” or “shared sacrifice.”  There is no agreement, anymore, on what Capitalim or Democracy mean.  Those have become just 2 more of the terms that mean whatever the speaker has in mind, and that probably changes as circumstances change.

  • Terry Tree Tree

    One of the best examples that I can bring to everyone’s mind, is General Motors.  CEO Rick Waggoner got a $20 MILLION Dollar BONE_US, for leading the company into bankruptcy!  On TOP of a reported $28 MILLION dollar pay, and who knows how much in benefits, plus stock?
       MANY CEOs get similiar pay and benefit packages for driving the company into bankruptcy, and WHINE about the pay of the workers that put the products together!
       What made Rick Waggoner’s ‘leadership’ worth $28.00?  A wino or drug-addict could bankrupt a company for $28.00!
       EVERY mortgage company, or bank that holds mortgages, that has unjustly evicted mortgaged home-buyers, should have their CEO EVICTED, and forced to endure the WORST conditions that any of their VICTIMS have had to endure!  These parasites get $ MILLIONS, for doing their job, NOT Robo-signing on foreclosures!

    • JustSayin

      “CEO Rick Waggoner got a $20 MILLION Dollar BONE_US, for leading the company into bankruptcy!”

      Hey, I would have bankrupted the company for half of that compensation. That’s a savings 24 million to the company.  I would label my achievement as skillful job creation.

      • Anonymous

        So you can see how one might deduce the Meltdown-Bailout as a conspiracy and a corporate coup? It was made possible by Inside Job Incorporated (on 9/11).

      • Terry Tree Tree

        I maintain that bankrupting a company, and putting people out of work, isn’t worth $28.00!
           Sorry , I wouldn’t hire you at your price!

    • Joe

      We should blame our government for bailing out these corporations with or money.  The bonuses are disgusting…

      • Ray in VT

        The bonuses are disgusting, and I wasn’t happy with the bailouts, but when the alternative looked like letting everything burn down and sink into a depression, people weren’t willing to let that happen.

        • Anonymous

          The bailout was a necessary evil to prevent collapse, but the government wasn’t obligated to cover every clause of the contracts and the bonuses should have not been paid. 

          • Ray in VT

            The government should have pressed a harder bargain on those issues, but it didn’t.

          • Anonymous

            agreed

          • Joe

            I disagree John.  We are going to have a collapse anyways.  The dollar will be devalued to no end.  The Euro  is failing and is only being kept alive by more printing.

            The bankers and Hank Paulson threatened martial law if the bail outs didn’t occur.  Fear tactics!

            I know it wouldn’t have been pretty, but collapse will occur with greater damage now.

            Congress hasn’t punished anyone for their criminal behavior…on the contrary, they rewarded them for packaging sub-prime mortgages and exported them for the world to share the carnage of the financial system.

            Eventually, the system will fail and there will be a gold/silver backed currency.  Probably the Renembi…they have banned the export of both metals and have been accumulating. 

            I hope for the best but fear for the worst.  Of course things will work out in the end…but what will we suffer through to get there.

        • http://www.jobwaltz.com JobWaltz.com

          Except that’s not what happens when there’s a bankruptcy. It’s merely the re-allocation of resources and capital away from incompetents to competents.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Those incompetents are ALL out of a position?  I can’t call it work, because evidently they didn’t!

      • Modavations

        The Solyndra guys are trying to get bonuses

  • Anonymous

    The two topics today are parallel aspects of the same digital technology being used in various ways by Elites to control the frustration of billions of superfluous people at the injustices of hierarchy and limited access. When I go to the Web I experience an endless imaginary wasteland and I search for sherds of discarded meaning. When I think about the vast sums of electronic money (often as debts and bets) being wangled by Oligarchs, comprehension is difficult and I come away with shadowy abstractions. Computer data manipulation is comprehensive and lightning fast, and so is beyond the scale of human capability. I have allowed myself the tentativeassumption that anything so far beyond our experience is psychologically meaningless and ethically/morally wrong. Others have embraced religious fictions and magical tinking as compensation. When a technology does not ultimately benefit the majority, and is poorly operated and dimly understood by  those few who  temporarily and partially benefit, it must be scaled down and limited so that it doesn’t overrun the carrying capacity of the human mind. As I have been seriously ill I have reflected on my speculation in commodities over these last three years, and how I have attempted to do constructive things and fight power with the proceeds. Now I see that I was fooled by a gradually attenuated feedback loop so that the more damage I caused the less I served justice. I was no more than a rat in a Lexan box pushing a bar to obtain food pellets, and that is what most colonized minds are like, always tethered to an ethereal stimulus, a Wire Mother.

    • Modavations

      I remember you.You’re Hundie Watts.Let me grab my  Dictionary of Leftist “Gobble de Gook,Ebonics Version.Lefty’s are a curious species,let it rip 

    • Tina

      Gradyleehoward, I’m sad to hear about your illness.  Hope all is going well now?!!  I tried to submit a piece that runs parallel to yours in some ways, but I keep getting Error messages.  I hope you get this.  

  • original famous Cory

    I’m actually fine with capitalism if it includes socialist measures that GUARANTY all people food, shelter, and education (Hell, let’s throw in medicine as well!).

    ANY capitalist state that denies any of these staples will be a perpetual creator of poverty and exploitation.

    People who exist without any of these basics have good reason to reject the existing social contract in an attempt to aquire them.

    That anyone be hungry or cold in America while Bill Gates and Warren Buffet have as much as they do is a travesty.

    • notafeminista

      Wait a minute Mr. Franklin do you want liberty or security?

      • Modavations

        Give me Liberty,or give me death

        • original famous Cory

          I don’t wanna die, Mo.  Why does it have to be an absolute?

          • Anonymous

            In cyberspace many contradictions are possible, but none of them are real. Mo might find his liberty in his many overseas travels trading blood diamonds and amputation gold. When Cory says Paul Allen would be a magnitude less wealthy this suggests income and asset caps as a solution.

          • Modavations

            In the 1600′s Columbian Emerald had a bad name.Indian Emerald commanded high prices,so the Portugese shipped the Columbian Emerald to Goa and called it Indian.You’re niave.

          • Modavations

            Who said that?No googling now

          • original famous Cory

            It was either Thomas Paine or Patrick Henry.  I haven’t had any caffeine yet.

          • Modavations

            Patrick Henry.Who wrote the bill of rights.No cheating please

      • original famous Cory

        Everything in moderation.  I want capitalism and freedom with guarantees. Paul Allen would still be rich, just not AS rich.  

        Libert or security, you ask.  Why can’t we have a measure of both?  Isn’t America “exceptional” enough to pull it out?  

        • notafeminista

          Nope.  You cannot have liberty if you have a safety net. Freedom means freedom to fail too.  Which is it gonna be Mr. Franklin?

          • Ray in VT

            I suppose that it depends upon how you define “freedom”.  But if you want that sort of freedom, are you, not as a person but on a more societal level, prepared to deal with the consequences?  Take a look at the abject urban poverty of the mid to late 19th century.  Would you really rather have that?  I am convinced that I will always get by, because I am willing to work hard and live cheap, but I also know that I got where I am because of the benefits that society provided to me, and my peers, as we grew up.

          • notafeminista

            We have it now.  Don’t we see in the news everyday poor people who can’t find jobs don’t find jobs have been unemployed for literally years, despite having every possible public assistance program available to them?  40 years of the so-called Great Society and we are no better off than 1875.

          • Tina

            Ridiculous!  And hide-bound!

          • Anonymous

            So if the current suit vs. the Affordable Care Act succeeds and people are free to have the liberty of not having health insurance (which I am sure you would agree with) then those who don’t have the resources to assure payment for care should be allowed to die, right?

             Frankly, I think only by actually implementing your view of liberty and dealing with the repercussions will the eyes of fools who repeat this ignorant mantra be opened. 

      • Tina

        Please, please, please remember that the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, etc.,etc. were all written when a Slavery Economy was what drove both the colonial engine, and also the newly-birthed democratic engine called the United States.  The wages in China suggest that Capitalists today are trying to replicate those Olden Times, but any REAL discussion of our solutions for today must look at the total landscape/picture that was in place when the Mr. Franklins and the others (far worse) wrote the documents of yore.  It was the disenfranchised people who, over the centuries, if they were able to get their complaints before the Supreme Court, helped re-write the mistakes and omissions of the original version of what this country could be, and of what the Constitution should say.   There is still work to be done.     

        • notafeminista

          You didn’t answer the question.  Is it gonna be liberty or security?

    • Anonymous

      How did the urban riots happen in the 1960s. Yes, MLKs head was blown off by some sort of conspiracy but there was urban rage years before that. People looked at TV and were told about many things and experiences they “should” have, but many lacked the opportunity or money/credit to aspire to these recommendations. At the same time they were shown undeserving lucky success story people who had everything. The Internet on a desk or lap, the handheld device with a little screen, are actually the refined children of TV. I cannot say like Marshall McLuhan if they are warm or cool, but that doesn’t much matter. Minds of all strata are being loaded; loaded in a myriad of ways by chance and personal selection. Some of these minds are gonna blow. If anything is a wild west Libertarian nightmare/dream the Internet is.Always on these boards we read the jackpot macoutes ready to pounce as soon as Papaw Paul discards the rules. These are creatures of the Internet too barbaric for the material reality. And likewise our troops with the Boy Scout peeing adventures and much more gross behavior off camera or concealed, and much of it instigated by the chain of command. This Empire is coiled like a steel spring and is at its breaking point. You could see it last night in Rick Santorum’s neck muscles, hear it in Newt Gingrich’s veiled racism (Fox debate), and the President signs repressive measures with this in mind. We could wake up in a “greater Syria” any morning. This is the fault of the “winners” who went all out of proportion and collapsed the party deck.

      • original famous Cory

        Thanks for the response.  Your wording was almost “beatnik” poetic.  I felt like I should have been slapping at a bongo at the end of some of your sentences. 

    • http://www.jobwaltz.com JobWaltz.com

      Capitalism is the voluntary exchange of goods and services. Who pays for the guarantee? 

  • Yar

    The power of a word: What happens when you hear the words capitalism or democracy ? Do levels of oxytocin increase or does it increase your level of testosterone.   I believe each person has a different hormonal response to these terms and it defines what they mean to us and how we respond.  Take away hormones and we die, figure out how to manipulate hormone levels in others and you create slaves. 
    Democracy is intended to prevent others from using capitalism to create slavery.  Capitalism is intended to make us self reliant and able to avoid being enslaved.  .  Money and math are used to buy elections.  This gives power to manipulate trade which prevents a free market.  When the two are no longer balance the lightening bolt of anarchy strikes.  Currently we have neither democracy or capitalism.  We have the seeds of revolution.  We may be able to step away from the brink of civil war by demanding a stop to the flow of money while in political office.  
    I would like to see a pledge signed by office seekers, to not trade in the market, not take contributions, not have a PAC or Super Pac while in office. A pledge to not use the office for family or personal gain. A return to democracy and support of capitalism.

    • Gregg

      Capitalism and Democracy are not mutually exclusive, not that you explicitly said they are. It just seems that point is getting lost.

      • Yar

        I was trying to say they are interdependent. You can’t really have one without the other, and we have lost both in our faux democracy and crony capitalism.

        • Joe

          Is more like Fascism……

          When corporations control government thats Fascism.

          • Modavations

            In a fascist society the economy stays in private hands,but the government runs the bosses.Solyndra,Corzine,Democrats model

          • Ray in VT

            I thought that the Democrats were supposed to be communists.  Fascism has, in practice, blended an anti-modern social philosophy with corporate power.

          • Joe

            Isn’t that what we have?

            Pharma writes their laws….

            Credit card companies write theirs….

            Lobbyists have become a parasite on DC……

          • Anonymous

            So what is the term for a society in which the economy stays in private hands,but the owners of business run the government?  Or is our current situation a entirely new form of government?

      • http://www.dogoodgauge.org The Do Good Gauge

        Nor are they mutually inclusive.  More like A and B where C represents your individuality.   A ^ B ^ C.  

        • Yar

          I guess the hormone feedback system could be expressed the same way where A is food B is shelter and C is sex.
          It gives insight on why we fall into logic traps of imagined simplicity.  Food, shelter, and sex, drive our decision making process. We act to meet our basic needs to sleep, eat and pass on our genes.Defining capitalism and democracy in the context of these basic drivers is where things start to conflict and get more complicated.  In a hunter gatherer society, environmental limits kept things in balance for those who survived. Death came at the hand of nature or neighboring tribe.  When you could not keep up with the food, you died.  Along came farming, and with that money, and we began to trade work over time. This divides our nation ideologically, which is how we tickle the balance of our individual hormones.  It expresses itself in wild and crazy ways. We might get fat, invest in gold, exploit others, gamble, engage in temporary sexual relationships, or even take drugs.

          • Anonymous

            If you’re only scoring a “C’ in sex maybe you’d prefer “A” grade porn, or so goes the sales pitch. Sooner or later the big money touches trafficking and then its off to the Wall Street Laundry.

        • original famous Cory

          I was told there wouldn’t be any math today.  :)

          • Anonymous

            The mortgage broker told you that?

          • http://www.dogoodgauge.org The Do Good Gauge

            It’s art, didn’t you notice the pretty picture ;)

          • Terry Tree Tree

            How else to get you to class?

          • Tina

            What a brilliant trajectory of comments!  

    • Terry Tree Tree

      You expect a politician to get by on $170,000 per year?   BEFORE the Benefits?
          All those restrictions?  What do you think they are, public servants?

      • Yar

        Maybe not the current politicians, but I expect there are some individuals in the country who are willing to try.  I would like to support them. 

        • Joe

          Ron Paul refused his Federal pension and he has been in office for over twenty years.  He also refused to accept medicare when delivering babies, instead he did the procedure for free.

          He is one of the few who takes tax payers  money seriously.

    • http://www.dogoodgauge.org The Do Good Gauge

      I would like to see that pledge as well.  Though I think it takes more than words or a promise.  There has to be accountability and motivation.  My proposition called Democracy Rules touches on the idea.   It needs to be tested as an experiment.  One small district with nothing to loose.  The best advice received came from a professor at Stanford University who said, “The only advice I might offer to your design process is to imitate nature: use evolution. By this I mean to design many experiments, test your assumptions and designs with those you are designing for, and iteratively improve your designs based upon what you learn.

      The problem is no community will step up to the plate and volunteer as the subject of such an experiment.  I’m sure there are many communities with nothing to loose, the bigger question is will individuals drop their fear of giving a neighbor a higher voice. Will they get off the couch and participate. Will the let go of a bias allowing them to judge instead of meet and
      understand others with a different point of view.  I can only hope.

  • Gregg

    Anyone who works passionately for their own best interest is far more valuable to society that someone who expects society to work for them. I look forward to the show that asks if Socialism and Keynesian economics are up to the challenges of this century. It seems that is the more pertinent question.

    • Anonymous

      Passionately peeing on your sniper victims; passionately cleansing the racial taint from leadership roles; passionately deporting people who’ve been unemployed too long (happens in Italy). What is your work, and what is “someone else’s” work? You’re right it is too late for socialism and liberal middle class compromises, but you’re such a gentile sheltered soul that you cannot imagine the consequences of what you often recommend. There is no invisible hand in the type of economy we have now. To you it is a word game and debate, but to the family with no job and a sick kid it  is something beyond your game. You can juggle the talking points but passion? You may have confused passion with pissin’ Gregg. (And I have read your posts for years now) Don’t you ever give thanks for your talents and success? You’re not self-made and neither am I. You know the system isn’t broken: It’s fixed. (rigged)

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Thanks Grady!  Isn’t it amazing when some people that claim to have risen from poverty, embody the same powers that held them down?
           What are the odds that they complained about the same problems that lower economy people are complaining about today?

        • Anonymous

          You climbs dat ladder with lotsa hep; squeezes thoo the trapdo’ and bolts it tight.  (Cosby nailed it down after Ennis’ murder.) You horrified! “cause you ain’t onena them monster mutants no more. (Poverty haunts your dreams and you hoard like nobody’s bidness. 

          • Terry Tree Tree

            I was truly sorry to hear that Bill Cosby’s son was murdered! 
               I have enjoyed Mr. Cosby’s talent since before “I Spy”!
               I can’t remember which show I caught his ‘Noah’ routine on, first!

      • Gregg

        I said “…works passionately for their own best interest…”

        I don’t see how pissing on corpses is in anyone’s best interest. Nice emotional distraction. I’ll overlook the crack about my alleged lack of compassion. We will never agree the extent to which the system is “fixed” but I am convinced I have the final say for me. You are convinced the ignorant victim masses don’t. Fine.

        My point is valid. In my case, if our horse farm wasn’t making money we could not have programs for handicapped kids. We once had a 7 year old boy paralyzed from the waist down win a blue ribbon in a lead line class and the judge did not know he was handicapped. Priceless. That would not have happened without lots of help. A local (greedy rich) lumber company donated lumber for the wheelchair ramp to mount the horse. We have lots of volunteers, they are mostly greedy rich people who can juggle their schedules. If we had not planned for years and built slowly keeping profit as a priority we could not have expanded 2 years ago to build an indoor arena. Now we have 3 physical therapist who come twice a week and I can’t even guess how many kids, some with severe handicaps, lives have been drastically and positively affected. We are on the cutting edge of something called Hippotherapy. I would gladly pay for the rewards I get volunteering. We have summer camps every year. If they did not make money we could not give spots away to under-privileged kids some of whom have been abused. We’ve worked almost 30 years with the local 4H and churches to make it happen. If my band wasn’t successful we could not spend weeks working with charter schools in nasty inner cities like Gastonia, NC to put on a concert featuring young teenagers that could not have imagined performing on stage. There is amazing talent out there and previously unknown passions are lit. All because we make money and can afford to give back.

        I could add, the family owned feed mill has done well with our business (3 tons of grain/month) the last couple of decades, so has our vet and his family. So has our blacksmith every Monday for the last 25 years. He has a retarded son (now 40) who is an inspiration. We have two single mothers who feed horses and depend on the income. Our hay guy, whose autistic son is 22, sells us 600 round bales and 2500 square bales a year. That’s 5 digits of income he depends on and has for a very long time.

        I am barely scratching the surface. The more we try to make money the more peoples lives are affected for the better.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          With that record, WHY would you think I would classify you as GREEDY rich?
             You don’t see a difference between the rich, and the GREEDY rich?
              You have NEVER dealt with someone that was ONLY wrapped up in grabbing money and other power, with NO regard for anyone else?

          • Gregg

            You’ve got it backwards. I’m not rich and I am greedy. I want all the money I can get. Excellence, honesty and a dose of good will is the best way to do that. Plus it feels good. We only get one life and I want mine fulfilled. I’m not resentful to those who have more.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            If you run that program for those children, for NO financial gain, you  are NOT greedy! 
                We ALL want more, of something! 
                Exploiting people,or the environment, through lies, fraud, mis-information, or other deceptions, to accumulate Power, wealth, etc…, disregarding the effects on the VICTIMS, is GREEDY!

      • Tina

        The authors of “Winner Take All Politics”, Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson, were on the new Bill Moyers show the other night (Moyers and Company).  Their book has the facts that prove that our economy is indeed “rigged”.  They said that way too many people think that our current state is just the “natural” state of a “free, Capitalist economy and market”, when, in fact, it is not.  The authors were extraordinarily articulate and easy to understand.  I’ve missed a few On Point shows, so I don’t know if they’ve been interviewed here (I could look it up!), but, I’d recommend finding a podcast of the Moyers show, if it’s available, or the book (sight unseen by me).  It looks like Foreign Affairs’ website might have a video interview with them.  Our economy IS rigged by the most powerful who are the ones who get advantage from the rigging!  Tax loopholes were closed down in 1986 & things got better for the Middle Income group, but ten years later, lobbyists got all that reversed.  Apparently, globalism does NOT explain it all, because there are developed countries that did NOT experience the spike in Inequitability we are experiencing in the US; our spike has to do with the loading of wealth which then was taxed at a tax advantage, en masse, creating even more amassed wealth for the wealthy few.   

    • original famous Cory

      The important question then is, what should be the fate of the “non-valuable” man you describe?

      Should a janitor who works hard and full-time be able to have a place to live and raise a family?  Should he have access to medicine?  When he is old and his body begins to fail, should he be able to retire and enjoy his final years in relative peace?

      I truly don’t care about the rich.  I care about the guy I just described above.

      • Brett

        “..what should be the fate of the ‘non-valuable man you describe?”

        It’s those kinds of questions that never seem to get answered by the neocon contingent around here. I’m not surprised; for one, there are no simple, obvious answers. In that respect, both sides (as it were) grapple with workable solutions. On the other hand, easy answers that are clean and one dimensional seem to appeal to the neocon contingent, e.g., education: vouchers; unemployment: get a job/start a company, and so on. 

        • Terry Tree Tree

          They simply can’t answer the important questions!  Where ARE the JOBS?  $BILLIONS in tax cuts, should have made the jobs they promised!  I guess they felt the need to hoard incandescent lights?  FAR more than creating jobs?  Warped?

        • Gregg

          A man makes his own value.

          • Ray in VT

            No man is an island.  A great idea is worth nothing unless you have a way to get it to market, and if it is a product, then you probably also have to have people to make it.  None of us do this on our own.

          • Modavations

            All real men are islands.

          • notafeminista

            Paul Simon said so.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            WHO are these ‘real men’?  They are islands?   How so?  I’ll bet someone helped them, sometime!

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

            The market determines value. Capitalism 101.

      • Gregg

        A janitor in the NYC school system makes over $100,000 before benefits. I care about the janitor too, we all choose our lot in life. That notions bugs some.

        • Guest

          I can only assume that’s what it takes to live in NYC.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      I agree that anyone who works passionately for their own best interest is far more valueable to society, than someone that expects society to work for them.   Society HAS to work for them, or it is NOT society!
          If you mean someone that expects society to support them without them working , is what I agree with.
         We ALL have different talents, skills, abilities, insights, and other characteristics, which enhance society’s survival, if utilized correctly!

  • Gregg

    Newt made a great point in last night’s debate about the 99 weekers. 99 weeks is an Associates degree.

    • Anonymous

      The point Newt made was about “99 weaks.”

      • Gregg

        Too punny for me. Good to see you Mr. Howard, I was worried. I see you are still on the same kick, me too. I hope all is well, regards to Gladiola.

    • Yar

      Another day older and deeper in debt?
      Watch the first few minutes of this video.
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VpZtX32sKVE&feature=youtu.be
      I don’t think buying gold or silver will save us but they make some valid points.

      • Joe

        Gold and silver will save you….make no mistake about it.  Especially silver.  The Euro is just about finished and the Fed is going to print away.  The best safe haven for preserving wealth is gold and silver. 

    • Terry Tree Tree

      When you’re trying to get another job, to keep up payments, and provide for your family, going back to school takes a back seat.  MANY people thought they would be employed long ago!
         How many of the courses touted as ‘recession-proof’ , are still valid? 
          Would MOST available Associates’, have been a good idea?

  • Anonymous

    Actually this is Gladiola borrowing the “brand” for a little letting off of steam. Grady is not always Grady, and is the moniker of a collective. He’s cool with it.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Sounds cool to me.

      • Anonymous

        I used to manufacture thinking caps at beret co-op.
        Free caps all around!

        • Modavations

          Hundie,I went out and bought a million 100 watt bulbs,anticipating a Lefty win.I’ve got a lifetime supply,as long as the juice is on

          • Anonymous

            That’s hilarious. I like incandescent bulbs myself and what this has to do with the left is beyond me. You seem to be drinking the same Kool-Aid as Michele Bachmann

          • Gregg

            Bush did it.

          • Modavations

            Are you guys serious.;The law was to go into effect on the first of the year.Sane heads prevailed,much to the chagrin of the Birkenstiock crowd

          • Brett

            Of course, that sounds more like a hoarding disorder/OCD than it does some sort of protection against an imagined future.  

          • Terry Tree Tree

            That, and a LACK of confidence of ability to re-acquire!

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Your house is larger, and has more lights than Al Gore’s? 
                You summon Hundie, for assistance, AFTER you hoard a million light bulbs?
                I agree that you need help, just think it needs be a different type!

        • Gregg

          Yea, beretco! Like the “figgers”, Mr. Martin and now GLH, a collective. Organized leftist messaging through blogs. They accuse us of that.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Gregg, who accused you of leftist messaging?

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Some of us would like thinking caps, some others NEED thinking caps, or something else that can think!

  • Anonymous

    We live and work in a capitalist society and to that effect one has no choice but to use the system we have. The problem I see is how money and special interest has taken over our federal government. I can’t speak for other states but here in Massachusetts government is working on some levels and on others it is not. Public transportation is were it is failing big time.

    I suspect the usual right wing anti progressive comments that will call people socialist and communist and a host of other names. That said it seems to me that our system is broken.
    Witness the last session of Congress that has an approval rating of about 10 to 12% and I think I’m being generous. It would seem that the only people who like our elected officials are their immediate family and some friends. 

    One other thing I really wish people would learn the meanings of socialism as we do not have anything near this in our country.
    We have social programs, but that does not mean we have any socialist type systems at play. Of course the tea party types that post here think that the Post Office is a socialist conspiracy which is good for comic relief. 

    • Anonymous

      And they used to call Teaparties “socials.”
      DEREGULATE- from the bottom up.
      END WELFARE- from the top down.
      (I’m all full of myself: I feel Occupied. Better get off the computer.)

      • Modavations

        Hundie Watts,what up dude

        • Anonymous

          I’m Spartacus!

          • Modavations

            I was wondering where Hundie went.Why are you guys foreve,r posting under Phantoms.My name is Fred Manning

          • Terry Tree Tree

            You changed it since yesterday?  You rant about others changing their screen names, which I have NEVER done?

          • Modavations

            My Passport reads;
            Frederick Douglas Manning.My parents are Civil Rights types.I’m Freddy Manning to my friends.What happened to the Greedy Greedy Rich routine and the Priests molested me,I’m a baskett case for life routine,it seems to have been dropped

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Does it seem that way?

          • Modavations

            Spartacus,Spartacus,I’ve seen this before.I’ll be right back.Chill

    • Terry Tree Tree

      I wouldn’t bet that some immediate family members like some of them!
          Without the warped cries of ‘socialism’, and other distractions, they might look at their own words and deeds, and find themselves lacking!   They might not be able to stand themselves?

    • Fredlinskip

      Any policy that directly or in indirectly involves improving the social good of the many is fair game for being attacked as “socialist” (which of course equates with communism-in the minds of many).
      This is the concept that in a large way has been used to exploit, manipulate, and propel T-party.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1816544 Dan Trindade

    In an increasingly complex world the pillars of democracy and capitalism require a lintel of comprehensive education and civic involvement to remain balanced and viable. Without an educated and involved populace, democratic institutions will falter and democracy will slip away. Without an educated and conscientiousness workforce, capitalism will fail and inequality will rise. Conversely an educated and involved populace requires the freedom and opportunity promised by a capitalist economy and a democratic and representative government. A lack of any of these three will lead to the collapse of all of them.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Fascinating Analysis, and caution!

    • Anonymous

      Send me the pillar that you dream on, so darlin’ I can dream on it too. (“Coolhead Luke”-What we have here is an effort to miseducate.) 

  • Anonymous

    This article by Robert Reich is very much in tune with today’s topic. Free Enterprise on Trial

    http://robertreich.org/post/15978350528

    • Modavations

      Ask Mr(3rd)Reich where Rubin worked.He made over 100million in 3 years(?),but claimed he wasn’t privy to the day to day operation

      • Joe

        Mr Reich has always annoyed me.  Figures he made 100 million.

        • Ray in VT

          Hold on, why should be be attacking someone who has made his own value.  Why criticize success.  That sounds a bit like the politics of envy.

          • Joe

            Ray it’s personal with me and Mr Reich.  I don’t like him.  I would bet that he made that money in a funny way…could be wrong.  But I know I don’t like him and his condescending attitude.  I don’t criticize success and if he made that amount of money on his own with out help from DC then good for him.  Sill not a fan. 

          • Ray in VT

            I wasn’t really trying to defend him.  I just wanted to use some conservative lines.  It’s too bad that we don’t have a sarcasm button.

        • Modavations

          Rubin.Robert(3rd)Reich is an appoligist for the Left

          • Joe

            Yes…..and you know how full of sh…t he is when opens his mouth.  He is very condescending as well.

        • Fredlinskip

          While mos t economists glowingly reported how great economy was and would continue to be, Reich was one of the few economists that warned people of the oncoming imminent collapse of our economy before the financial meltdown.
             Personally I would prefer to hear form those economists that were right in their predictions, than those who were, and likely continue to be- wrong.

          • Joe

            Ron Paul predicted all of this mess 10+ years ago.  He has been out spoken and offered solutions every step of the way.  Riech was in a position of influence and should have done more. 

            here is one video of hundreds online of Ron Paul warning the country.

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alaeMXX_juU

    • Terry Tree Tree

      How many teachers, or other public union workers could be employeed for five years with $30 MILLION?

  • Brad

    It looks like conservatives have used the “free market” to socially engineer wealth  upwards. They like their version of the free market because they can manipulate it. What they don’t like they legislate out, like unions in right to work laws, risk for huge banks, etc.  Then when it comes crashing down, they blame the poor undereducated person who didn’t read the fine print. I think it’s time to show the “challenge” flag and create a free market system that has more equitable outcomes for the real hard working American who does the dirty work, not just the thinkers and the money manipulators. 

    • Joe

      In a free market insolvent companies go bankrupt.  Bailing out these companies only prolongs and exagerates the problem. 

      • Ray in VT

        But if they are so large and powerful that they can ruin us all when they go down then should they?  I wouldn’t say so, as much as it angers me.

        • Joe

          They knew they would be bailed out.  Let them fail…. we’re screwed either way.  They’ll probably go under anyways or need more bailouts.  The entire money system is corrupt.  Printing trillions of $$ is only going to make it worse.

          Let the bad apples fail….

          • Ray in VT

            But I’m not willing my idiot neighbor burn down my house because he was burning trash on a dry day.  Maybe he deserves to lose his property, but he shouldn’t take mine with it.  And I don’t think that we’re screwed either way.  We have been in tough spots as a nation and as a people before, and we have always managed to come through before.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            We dood it before, WE will do it again!

          • Joe

            Ray we have a 15 trillion dollar debt……if you include unfunded liabilities the number is more like 70 trillion+.

            The money we gave to the banks is gone and the problem is getting bigger.

            Unemployment is going up with no hope on the horizon.  How are things going to get better?  I know eventually things will improve but I don’t think they will under the current administration.  It will take bold ideas and fiscal responsibility.  I believe only Ron Paul understands the problems and how to fix them.

          • Ray in VT

            That is true about the debt.  I don’t know about the unfunded liabilities.  However, we were on a track to eliminating the debt before the big taxes cuts and unpaid for spending of the previous administration.  The annual deficit has come down a bit, but it is still unacceptably high, but a recovering is narrowing it a bit.

            Big banks are a problem.  They have only gotten bigger, but what is the solution?  Break them up like the Republicans did to the large trusts in the early 20th century?  They certainly aren’t going to get smaller on their own.

            Actually the unemployment rate is going down a bit nationally, and it is pretty good where I am.  I think that Ron Paul’s economic and government worldview is entirely cracked.  I cannot see how his vision would make anything any better.

          • Joe

            Ray our deficit is not going down.  Everytime they raise the debt ceiling it goes up. 
            http://www.cato-at-liberty.org/the-national-debt-is-huge-but-unfunded-liabilities-are-americas-real-red-ink-challenge/

            The unemployment rate is going down because they don’t count the people who have used their 99 weeks.  The rate is much higher and the only reason it went down was seasonal hiring.

            Big banks are corrupt.  JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs they are the problem.  They need to be held accountable for their crimes.  But congress only goes after the Martha Stewarts and occasionally the Madoffs of the world.

            Ron Paul’s world view is one where the US doesn’t go bankrupt trying to police the world.  I would argue that the military is often used for corporations and not for defending the American people.  The Iraq war is a prime example.  Why are we still there?  Why did we build a base bigger than the Vatican? 

          • Ray in VT

            I said that the annual deficit is going down, not the debt.  You make some very valid points, but what do we do about something like corrupt banks?  Is Congressman Paul’s solution anything other than to not regulate them?  We should not be the world policeman, but Mr. Paul suggested that we fight global piracy by hiring our own privateers.  That is just nuts.  Again, I can agree with him on some things, but on others he is just out to lunch.

          • Joe

            He wouldn’t bail them out and would apply the rule of law when corruption occurs.

            As I said before, government should be held accountable for giving them billions of dollars of tax payer money.  It was an inside Job….just like John Corzine.  These guys like Timmy and Hank have committed financial treason.  Benny boy too!

            Ray, I’ve enjoyed our conversation and would love to discuss more but have I to go into Boston and get some work done.  Thanks for your replies and I look forward to more of your thoughts later.

          • Ray in VT

            Have a good trip, Joe.  I know that we disagree on a lot, but I’m glad that we could respond to each other civilly.  This show really hampers my ability to work somedays, so I guess that I’ll have to stay late to make up for my time posting.  Cheers.

          • Joe

            Thanks Ray, talk soon.  I am really leaving now.  :)

          • Terry Tree Tree

            AND the largest  Embassy in the world?

          • TFRX

            Ohnoes! Fifteen trillion1!!1one!

            Percentages, please, if you are not just interested in scare talk.

            And at this point in the business cycle, why are some people fretting over the deficit the way it was never a problem during Shrub’s 5-year expansion?

          • Modavations

            We will pay 457 billion in interest this year alone

          • Joe

            With no signs of improvement.

    • Fredlinskip

      Conservatives by definition resist change.
      If our country and economy are doing fine, don’t fix it.
      There are always powerful interests at anytime in any economy or country that wish things will remain the same because they have profited and will continue to profit by the way things currently are.
      It’s up to the populace that have been exploited by these powers-that-be to bring about change, i.e. progress.
      This is the concept behind Progressive beliefs.

      Progressive policy changes have brought Women’s rights, civil rights, worker’s rights, pollution standards, various protections from exploitation,end of slavery, even freedom from the Tyranny of England through revolutionary War. All of these were hard -fought victories.

      In recent decades many of these efforts have been undermined. It’s up to us to either lie down and get mowed over by the forces of great wealth and influence, join these forces and live by a policy of “let the rest eat cake”, or do all we can to bring out changes that return us to an America “for and by the people”.

  • PaulCJr

    I say the American system isn’t up for the task, because the people aren’t up for the task. American don’t think critically, are subject to tribalism, and will believe whatever you tell them. Unless this changes I don’t see the American system up to the task.

    • Four Elements

      Seduced by advertising, sedated by television, addicted to consumption, hypnotised by gadgetry, deceived by sound bites – what a hopeless species!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    Democracy and capitalism are not mutually dependent on each other – China being proof.

    The collapse of communism does not mean the success of democracy/capitalism – given current events it may be moving towards its own collapse.

  • Tina

    I was so interested to hear your introduction to this show!  When the Berlin Wall fell, everyone I knew was cheering, but I said, now it’s time to look at Capitalism insightfully:  when does it talk big while failing so many people?  I already knew I personally preferred the Social Democracies of the Scandinavian countries; I thought the fall of the Socialist/Communist economic system was time for us to consider incorporating some of their “social” goals into our own Capitalism, especially national health care, child and dependent care — even tho the Soviets had blown the expression of those goals.  So far, too many of us look at the failing parts of Socialism instead of at the examples of parts of Socialism that DO work, worldwide.   

    • MainStreet

      And where has the peace dividend gone?  Our industrial – military complex has just continued to grow while the social programs are deemed too expensive. And the politicos on both sides just keep feeding “the people” the fear factor to support their rich military and corporate buddies.  Our military spending is greater than all the other countries in the world combined! Get real! Cut the military and give the folks the medical care they deserve!

  • John in Amherst

    Free market capitalism does not have to be a free-for-all.  Sports like football have rules to promote a fairer and safer contest between competritors.  No grabbing facemasks, no clipping, no weapons in the game, etc…The economic system could take a lesson or two.  Whenever too much capital is controled by too few players, markets become distorted.  What’s worse, politics follows suit: as profits accumulate faster than they can be used to promote innovation and efficiency, they are used to buy influence over politiicans and the legal process.  Economies are like machines in that they need periodic maintenance and recalibration to work properly.  What is difficult to understand is that this is so easily ignored. 

    • Tncanoeguy

      Yes, the model is broken because of the belief that unfettered markets will lead to prosperity for all.  Without rules you end up with economic polarization – the current path that we are on. 

  • Terry Tree Tree

    Capitalism based on Corporate Welfare, and other criminal activities, is going to destroy itself!
        Democracy, fueled by lies and deceit, will erase Democracy!

    • Modavations

      The Pervert Priest did it,the Greedy Rich did it,Bush did it

      • Anonymous

        Finally a sensible post.  Did your guppy help?  I know you were serious as it lacked a “j.”

        • Modavations

          All my posts are correct,some laced with humor.I use “J” because Terry can’t figure it out.It’s my way of assisting the handicapped.Which Guppy,the French one or Spanish

        • Terry Tree Tree

          You noticed it too?

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Moda??   Can’t be Moda?

  • Ellen Dibble

    I think the power of computers, the speed of their machinations, is disabling the checks and balances that capitalism is supposed to have to content with.  You can’t “fire your insurance company” if derivatives and short-selling and who-knows-what have already made any efforts of you and your fellow insurance-seekers moot.  You have already been “taken” by the time someone figures out the algorithm, the strategy.  Technology does this, disables capitalism’s competitive edge.

  • Norman

    This country was created as a Democratic nation – not a capitalist one. I don’t like the thought of the two being blended. Capitalism, like all other religions, has no place in our government. When did we lose our way?

  • Keepyourdrawingloose

    We’ve returned to the robber baron days of a century ago. Things will change sharply because they have to. But, it’s not going to be a pretty ride.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    Boom-bust are inherent in capitalism – the question is whether it has an end game. Have we hit a point where it’s just going burn out?

    It will never die away forever – but will we hit a point where it has to burn out and rise from the ashes to continue?

  • Anonymous

    The root of the evils of capitalism can be traced to the fact that wealth is being tied to more and more abstract means of acquisition – from resource production to profiting off of an interest/debt paradigm.  This funnels money out of communities into large financial institutions who then exert enormous influence on the political process, and soon the worm is eating it’s own tail.  Eliminate the profits off of interest, help people eliminate debt, help communities cycle sustainably.

  • Scott

    Capitalism ate Democracy.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

      Money = power.

      Power corrupts.

      • http://www.dogoodgauge.org The Do Good Gauge

        Absolutely!

  • Scott B, Jamestown NY

    In this country the “Citizens United” ruling has set a tone that says “Money = Freedom = Democracy”, which is the “golden rule” of “He who has the money makes the rules.”   That’s not democracy, that’s plutocracy. 

    Now we have the wealthiest fraction of the 1%, who have already successfully lobbied to reduce the tax rates on themselves,  further widening the income and mobility gap, continuing to lobby for more of the same, to where the 99% has no resources to fight them.

    • Tncanoeguy

      Yes, the extreme pay-to-play politics that we have now are tipping the scales.  The Koch brothers are free to “say” a lot more than this teacher. 

    • Modavations

      What’s the difference between a union and IBM

      • Anonymous

        One is owned equally by all affected members and the other is owned strictly in proportion to who has the most money.  Isn’t that obvious?

  • Still Here

    The quality of the democracy is increasingly important as government becomes a greater share of the economy and a bigger actor in capitalism.  Neither exist in a pure sense, nor could they.

    • Scott

      The problem is that government is not playing a big enough role in regulating capitalism. Between 1950 and 1964 the highest tax rate on the wealthy was 91%. Now the 1% cries about increasing it 3% points to 39%.  

      • Still Here

        I don’t see the connection between taxes and regulation, only taxes and wasteful spending.

  • http://www.dogoodgauge.org The Do Good Gauge

    This blog just provided a light bulb moment.   The radio program is called On Point.  You notice how no one can stick to a point in this blog?  I think the moneyed interest groups has figured out how to use the media to distract the public.  Americans can’t stay On Point, let alone focus on One Point.  

    How can Democracy work with such a short attention span.  Open discussion is entertaining, though it provides little opportunity to advance an idea for the betterment of many.

    Maybe Capitalism succeeds because there is only Three Points.   Money, money, and money.

    • Still Here

      This is not America, this is WBUR.

    • http://www.dogoodgauge.org The Do Good Gauge

      blooop! blooop! blooop! blooop!

      That is the sound of one more pubic hair of a thought washing down the drain of the No Point blog. I know I’m not worthy, but someday someone with an answer will have his or her gentile hair of an idea washed down this same drain. 

      Pay attention, watch as this thought swirls into the depths of obscurity where it will never be seen by human eyes again.   It was a small piece of me, not to be missed.

  • Yar

    It is really because we are an aging society.  We did not have enough children to support our vision of growth.  Compare our average age with those societies that are experiencing rapid growth.  We could lessen the impact with smart immigration.  Wealth is created by productive work.  All the rest is a sham.

  • Scott B, Jamestown NY

    The Tea Party brought a culture of “My way or the highway” to a deeply polarized Congress. Now the Tea Party tail wags the dog that is the Republicans, and compromise is untenable. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1439572620 Joe Lee

      I have sympathy for the tea party. I also believe that government is dysfunctional. 

      However, they’ve been co-opted by the Koch Bros. who are essentially using them as pawns to get their own way. Regardless of what their ideals are, they are being used in ways that may seem like they agree with their goals in the short run, but the puppet-masters have a much longer term view. In the long run, the benefits fall to corporate interests.

      • Scott B, Jamestown NY

        The original idea for the Tea Party and the Occupy people are two side of the same coin. The Tea Party saw government piling on taxes on those that could least afford more taxes, and the Occupiers saw Big Biz and Big Banks as having too much influence on government, bring the economy down, and keeping the 99% stagnant. 

        The Tea Party was co-opted by people like to Koch bros., and every social and moral niche faction so now they’re against what they were originally against. But they drank the KoolAid and can’t see it.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    Everyone agrees infinite growth is unsustainable – but no one will consider whether we have hit that point.

  • ping1

    The “greedy” rich run this country quite well

  • Mr. Man

    Democracy and capitalism are great ideas with successful track records. We should try more of them instead of republican disconnect in representative government that serves the interests of the rich through corporate welfare. In 1789, there was a congressional representative for every 33K people. Today that same person represents over 700K people. The power of the people is highly diluted, and we see the effects in the pooling of money and power in a hereditary elite.

    • MainStreet

      With 700K vs. 33k wouldn’t you think the people would have increased influence over their elected representatives? But it hasn’t changed – money is power.  Jefferson, Madison, Washington, etc. were all wealthy men in their days.  And while we like to idealize their intentions, they were working to get out from under the yoke of the big guys in Britain.  The Supreme Court has sealed our fate with money of the corporations and the rich ruling our republic until the folks demand accountability of their representatives!  Why don’t we all demand our representatives to run without the tainted money of PACs and their party campaign funds.  We have to sternly challenge every rep who lives by the tainted funds!  Who can identify the name of the website that tracks contributions to each federal rep?

  • AlexDL

    Capitalism works well only when it is tempered with socialism.

    The enemy of our democratic capitalism is a totalitarian capitalism.  Having one way and only one way of conducting business is where we would fail.

    • Tncanoeguy

      Capitalism/big business can be as tyrannical as big gov – a balance is needed.  Did we have the proper balance in the post WWII years? 

    • Four Elements

      I think “totalitarian capitalism” is also known as fascism.

      Socialism also works well when tempered by capitalism; each is the antidote for the excess of the other.

  • Bonillakathleenm

    Until with have public financing of election and take the corporate money out of elections, things won’t/can’t change. 

  • Anonymous

    How do we return to a mixed economy in time? Our democracy has been corrupted: Corporations are now persons; proxies of the ultrawealthy who through them wield their power as puppet masters of Senators and Congressman.  They stack the deck in their favor. They pay taxes at lower rates than people who have to work just to live let alone think of retiring. The system is broken for the 99%, so how does the 99% overcome this corruption before it falls apart?

  • Scott B, Jamestown NY

    So many people read “socialism” and their brains jumble it into “communism”, and it’s not.  This country has long been a mix of socialism and democracy.  That we have public roads, schools, and armed services, all paid for with public money, isn’t the mark of democracy alone.

    • Ray in VT

      Don’t forget that money from a DOD project back in the 1960s helped create the forerunner of the Internet.

      • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

        Right, and the government built the highway system, and the government funded the GI Bill which educated many people and this stimulated much of the real economic growth in the 50′s and 60′s.

        And oil is propping up this “growth” economy.  Without cheap oil, we could not ship everything from Asia.  Food would have to be grown locally.

        Oil is finite, because the earth is finite.  The jobs will come back when oil becomes too expensive.

        Neil

      • Scott B, Jamestown NY

        It used to be that the government bought pretty much bought every computer chip made. If that’s not subsidization I don’t know what is?  But that’s what it took to get the US as the leader.  Sadly, the same US computer ship companies that were lifted by this investment are the same ones that now have more factories in Asia than  in the US.

        Now when the US wants to invest in something, like renewable energy
        (e.g. Solara), the Chinese subsidize solar panels, and together with
        their purposeful devaluation of their currency, drive US makers into the
        ground by effectively dumping super-cheap solar panels into the market. 

        But look at Foxconn where workers are paid 32 cents and hour, work 35 hour shift, and are jailed for trying to unionize. Oh, and their building have catch nets to curb (but not stop) the suicides and suicide attempts. Would this be tolerated in the US?  No. But if it’s “over there” it’s ok because we get our iPads, cell phones, etc. cheap, and the Right still gets to demonize uinions.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Back then, the government was BUYING nearly every computer chip made, because our Defense Systems were using them to make better Defense Weapons. 
             One circuit board, for the system that I was trained for, cost $10,000, because it used the cutting edge technology at the time!  That helped break the finances, and therefore the backs of the Soviet Union! 
              I am a long-standing proponent of renewable energy, and agree with you!
              $BILLIONAIRES making $BILLIONS from the labor paid 32 cents per hour, driven to suicide, kind of makes a sane person sick, doesn’t it?

      • Modavations

        There are two types in this world.Those who pray at the alter of govt. and those with faith in the individual.The affluence of free enterpriseled to the advent of govt..Your chicken and egg are in the wrong order.First came the affluence of the Dominant male, then the advent of government.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Weren’t you chastising someone for spelling and grammar?

          • Modavations

            The priest got me,the greedy rich got me.How many years have you been wearing that as your badge of courage.Did you sue them.If not,why notThat converstion was between us two and he knows what it’s about

  • Tncanoeguy

    Hang up this guy.  No one wants communism. 

    • Terry Tree Tree

      That’s two fellow Tennesseans that disagree with him!

    • Scott

      Must be you like Plutocracy?

  • Redwheel57

    How can anyone say that capitalism works when perhaps 50 percent of the population in the world’s wealthiest country ever lives in poverty?

    • Christopher Bieda

      Simply because the poverty in America makes the poverty in other systems (political Islam for the vast majority of the Afghan population, state capitalism for the peasants, more numerous than all Americans, in China) look luxurious.

  • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

    OIL is the reason of this temporary “success”!  We are at the end of this oil driven bubble…

    Neil

    • Modavations

       know,I know and Professor Linzer,Sloan Chair MIT,knows squat

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1439572620 Joe Lee

    Democracy doesn’t mean that each person has equal and perfect representation. We have attempted to create a system where everyone gets as close to an equal vote for representation in the federal government, but it is not perfect.

    I see the root issue being discussed in this program is the ability of some with power (in this sense determined by the amount of wealth available at an entity’s disposal) to concentrate representative power to shape the laws to their favor (at the detriment of the majority at times).

    We don’t want to believe that elections can be bought, and in a direct sense, they can’t. However, campaigns require cash. So, while the ability to control funds to political efforts may not guarantee success, it can play a large part on its failure.

    Knowing this, there has been a growing vicious circle between the elected and those with wealth. Those with cash will not scuttle a politicians’ efforts as long as the politicians execute the will of those with wealth. 

    In the current environment, anyone who is not willing to practice some form of appeasement towards the corporations cannot compete on an equal level with individuals who are because those with money (mainly the corporations) can just flood the coffers of those who do support their will to the point where it completely buries anyone that might stand against them.

  • Steve Tiffany

    Capitalism and socialism aren’t the only options.  I’m intrigued by the alternative economic system known as Non-POM, which is short for Non-Physical-Object Money. 

    Individuals would earn money based on how much net benefit they create for other people. The more you improve the world for others, the more money you earn for yourself. The system is structured so that the ones determining your pay have personal reasons to be fair and no monetary incentive not to be.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Intriguing concept!  I see some potential.

    • notafeminista

      So….if they just don’t like you, they don’t have to pay you?  Or maybe if you divorce their family member you get a paycut or maybe even fired?

      Good lord.

  • Jsyook

    Capitalism is not a natural state with no intervention. Natural state of economy without regulation ends up being natural monopoly.  That’s why market economy with competition must be under regulation. Get advanced to Econ 201 not dwelling on Econ 101. Read little more.

    • Christopher Bieda

      In my case, advanced micro was Econ 150, but I was never taught that monopoly is the ineluctable result in every industry or market.  There will never be a monopoly in cart-served hot dog vendors unless the state grants one, whereas I can easily imagine a single carmaker (or one with 99% of the market) even without state support.

  • Troll Doll

    I think anyone thinking that Mid-Century America was and ideal time should listen to DR.Kings speech regarding Vietnam. Not only is he discussing how the American war machine is taking resources directly from poor people, but pretty much outlines all of the  corruption in corporate politics today.

  • Randy Cain

    I think militarism and corruption (crony capitalism) are the basic problems with United States.

  • BAS

    We can’t leave the plethora of environmental degradations that go hand in glove with the march of modern capitalism.  Doesn’t that belong in this conversation too

  • Scott B, Jamestown NY

    Our founding fathers looked at all the forms of government and weighed each one, and decided on democracy, knowing its imperfections.  They also expected the following generations to rise up to the challenges that would arise from it. 

    Capitalism is good. It plays to human nature to want to better their lives.  It’s why communism doesn’t work, because why work when there’s no incentive? 

    However, history, and many, many  studies, show that those that start making lots of money want to share less and less of it and find way to make more and more.  This is done on the back of those that have little or no paths to bettering their lot, nor having their voice heard by those in power.

  • Anonymous

    I hear lots of indignation coming from the Right, in particular screaming Marxism, Communism and Socialism. How to do these interests reason that they are entitled to 100% of their earnings from their personal value which is due in great part to the very society and economic system that creates that value and has in the past served to protect that value and their wealth?

    • Modavations

      Free men reject the Oven,the Gulag,the reeducation camp

      • Anonymous

        I have to say for a guy who claims to have a degree in political science from BC you have a surprising lack of knowledge in this subject and history. It’s really quite amazing. 

        • Modavations

          Yes you’re right.You are far more worldly having attended Pattrice Labumba University

        • Modavations

          I dropped out after 2 and a half years.Like Jobs and Gates.Just glorified High School.You presume an awful lot lad

    • TFRX

      I wonder how easy it is to be a rabid anti-Communist right-winger when one’s parents are retired with some dignity and some resources thanks to 75 years of Social Security and almost half a century of Medicare.

      • Modavations

        You paid for S.Sec..You paid for Medicare.That’s not socialism

  • Modavations

    Most of Europe is run by the Republicans.Europe tried socialism and has turned their backs.Sweden is Center right.Jyrki in Finland runs a center left right coalition,Stoltenberg’s Norway is also a right-left coalition.A country that has 15millionish white guys can follow any “ism”they want..Even Spain threw out the Left in a landslide

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Keep repeating this, maybe someday, you’ll believe it?  Then, you can work on convincing others?

      • Modavations

        Throw in a Mercury quip.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Why?

          • Sam Walworth

            he / she /it , ran out of repeated speech, that’s why!

    • Tncanoeguy

      Is a European “Republican” the same as a tea party Republican?  Europe still has a more socialist society and attempts to dismantle universal health care, for example, would be frowned upon by the people. 

      • Modavations

        You now have to pay for college,you will soon be forced to pay for health care

        • Christopher Bieda

          Because now it is free?

          • Modavations

            If you could get into Oxford it was free.Those days are past.Now you pay.Everyone’s broke.

        • Anonymous

          Irrelevant nonsense. 

    • Ray in VT

      Your point is just as invalid today as it was yesterday.  The center-right parties of Europe are not seeking to demolish the social safety net or undertake massive deregulation.  Do you have anything new to say on this topic, or are you just going to trot out your tired, incorrect views.

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Moda uses the same old thing, time after time after time, after time, expecting different results!  What’s that?

      • Modavations

        Canada is run by the Right,Mexico is run by the right.The socialists of Spain lost in a landslide.Boston is run by the socialists,Wash  is run by the Left,Brattleboro,San Francisco and those are your last Alamos.Even China is one Tienenam Sq(?) from a laissez faire economy.Singapore is Republican,Thailand is Republican,Myanmar Generals are turning laissez faire.I enjoyed yesterday and your talk on the “mrean streets of Brattleboro” 

        • Ray in VT

          First of all, I didn’t say anything about Brattleboro yesterday.  Secondly, the point which you seem unwilling or unable to grasp is that American conservatives and what pass for conservatives in other countries are different.  If a moderate European ran for office here in the U.S. they would be branded as a flaming radical.  Do you really think that the Chinese Communist party would allow a movement that would disrupt their power?  A more market-based economy was seen to be in their best interest, but they’re still totalitarian.  You can have both you know.  They, and the 300ish million trained soldiers, are willing to shoot people to keep the government in power.

          • Modavations

            Dude you are involved in acrobatics.Contortionist”s stand in awe.Sorry,I meant the mean streets of Burlington.What’s the diff?As for Europe I know it like the back of my hand.Io sono Italiano,la famiglia vivono in Bologna.Tengo muchos amigos en todas parte. Autre Famille Manning habitent en Paris.Those were the guppies.

          • Ray in VT

            And you are involved in wilfull denial.  I don’t care what language(s) you speak.  If you think that American Republicans and the British Tories are the same, then you don’t know a thing.  Who in Europe is attempting to dismantle national health care if they are so much like American conservatives?

          • Modavations

            I’m a European traveler  and know of what I speak.Do you speak from experience or second hand info?Even the Canadian Premier of New Foundland ran to Miami for a heart operation.Fidel ran to Spain and they flew in Brits!!!!~!!!

        • Terry Tree Tree

          This is the results of a college education?

    • Anonymous

      Not this sad tired stuff again.
      You are not funny, get it.

  • Ellen Dibble

    If jobs are not coming back, and corporations buy up the competition and are set up to benefit the share holders, then what should Americans do?  Maybe all should be given a nest egg at birth, so that they may be “share holders” in the profits that capitalism allows.  Maybe they should go overseas to work, where health care does not eat up all those benefits, and where the jobs are.

    • Christopher Bieda

      The nest egg is a wonderful idea; how would that be different from investing Social Security in the stock (or bond) market?  In theory, demands on the Social Security system would be moderated by the need not to strangle industry by overconsuming the seed corn.  

      Likewise, the redistributionist Retirement Savings Tax Credit (a Bush-Republican Congress innovation) was a good step in this direction: By subsidizing low-income savers at a higher rate than higher-income savers, government helps to build a nest egg for those least likely to save, anyway (so there’s no place to go but up, and I will not let the good be the enemy of the perfect!).

  • Christopher Bieda

    If liberal democracy and free markets are being threatened by political Islam (e.g., Iran) and state capitalism (e.g., China), one must remember the truth about outrunning a bear: To “win,” it is not necessary to actually outrun the bear–it is sufficient to run faster than another morsel.  

    The relevance of political Islam is almost exclusively based on the need of the liberal democracies for oil in order to lubricate and fuel their free markets.  I am not persuaded that oil will be relevant by mid-century, when my kindergarten-age daughter is middle-aged.  

    Likewise, I am convicted that state capitalism is not stable in the long-run; the history of free markets and rapidly rising standards of living indicates that democratization and personal freedom will result.  These have been anathema to corporatism in the past; why because this version is “Made in China” will it be different?

    Tom, Churchill was right.

    • Four Elements

      I doubt that democratization and personal freedom can survive an age of diminishing resources, shrinking of the economic pie and irreversible global economic decline. But I like the way you think.

  • Tina

    To the one guest:  THANK YOU for making your comment about our politicians acting like children and speaking to us as if we were children!!!  That is SO accurate!! 

    And, thank you for asking:  if the government is not involved in our health insurance, do we want for-profit corporations involved in it?!!!  THANK YOU!  

    This discussion is SO REAL!  The guests are cutting right thru the cant that otherwise fills the airwaves!!!  Hey!  The Republicans use cant to falsely suggest that we can’t (have single payer health insurance; tax the wealthy at the appropriately higher rate, etc., etc.)!!!  

    Great show!  

     

  • Judith Gordon

    Capitalism assumes continued growth; ecologically this is not  possible.  Until we do a better job of measuring our economy in an ecological way, capitalism is not going to work!

  • Modavations

    We have laws and regs up the whazoo,start enforcing a few.I strongly suggest Term Limits on the Solons

  • MarkVII88

    Didn’t John McCain get spanked in the 2008 presidential election by trying to inject a dose of realism about jobs in this country?  He stated that we just can’t expect all those factory manufacturing jobs that were shipped overseas will come back once our economy improves.  He stated that we need to think of new ways to innovate and become successful in a capitalist world.  But I guess people just didn’t want to hear that talk and many still think they live in an age when they can get a good paying job out of high school that sees them through a 30-40 year career with a pension at the other end.  WRONG!

    • Anonymous

      You are correct in stating that none of the features that the greatest generation took for granted as Americans are now available to only a few.  What I don’t get is your apparent celebration of that fact.

    • bellavida

      Mark….I went to college and paid my own way, worked 2 jobs every single summer and worked every semester I was in school.  I’ve worked for two very large enterprises since and let me tell you, you could barely call my work a career in terms of how I am treated by my current employer.  I graduated from college over ten years ago, and I’ve always known that I would never stay at the same company from start to finish in my career, that is the stuff of years past.  My plans for life did not work out, I made into med school but due to an illness I was not able to go and complete my degree.  Tell us something new, we know the manufacturing jobs are long gone.  I want to know why CEO’s in America make an average of 344 times of the average worker, does he work even twice as much as I?  I want to know why salaries at Wall Street have grown exponentially since the 70′s, and something like the debacle that occurred with the market crash has not led to criminal charges against those individuals responsible for it all.  After the market meltdown, I am told by my employer that the gravy train is over.  What gravy train?  I was never on it!!!

  • Eric

    One of the guests earlier was talking about how do get the mixture right…

    What has changed most significantly from the middle of the last century is the distribution of earnings between wages and corporate profits. Wages are now at a fifty year low which is why the middle class is struggling because corporate profits go to the owners of the capital which tend to be the richest people.

    I have to laugh at people who call those who talk of “income inequality” as waging class warfare. Those people are trying to end the class warfare that Reagan unleashed by changing the distribution between wages and corporate profits

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Class warfare was started, and continues by the upper-income class!

  • Scott B, Jamestown NY

    Until you drag every millionaire member of Congress and the PACs to a medical safari in West Virgina, or make them work way too hard for minimum wage for a few months, they’re never going to grasp what it’s like for the 99%.

     I have no idea what it would take to get the obstructionists in Congress to understand the word “compromise”. 

  • Adfg

    I would be interested in your guests comments on what capitalism will look like in say 100 years.  How many widgets can the world absorb?  What will a work week look like in 100 years – 20 hours for essential work only and by whom?

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    American investors and corporations have their money and resources invested in China – why would they want the US to effectively compete?

  • alitza blough

    First: Money out of Politics. Nothing will change, nothing CAN change until we get the money out of politics. I don’t know how, or I don’t know the best way, just sayin’ Money out of Politics. It’s, perhaps the biggest piece we didn’t have in the system of the 20th century that worked so well.

    Second: Industrialism served us well for the last century, but it’s killing us when it comes to food. The second thing the last century has shown us is that Industrial Food does not work. Look at our health numbers. A lot of that is because we consume empty calories. Even the whole foods, grown on industrial fields are void of key nutrients because of the herbicides we use and how they work. They bind key nutrients for the weeds… and the crops we grow. The have been developed to allow the crops to grow, but the crops are still nutrient deficient.

    Look to Joe Salatin and others for sustaninable methods. Biggest thing about this is moving, dare I say running at breakneck speed, from dumping fossil fuel on our fields. Imagine instead properly composting even half that much acerage. The carbon sequestered… and that never released because no fossil fuel developed fertilizers are used… would make quite the dent in the greenhouse gas situation. Stop proping up an agricultural system that is killing us.

    This will take people, so we put people back on the land in small communities. Not the dirt poor farmers of the 19th century, God bless them, but use technology to make a rural life INDEPENDENT and comfortable.

    Corporations won’t be making money on this view… that’s the uphill battle, but the money will be more distributed… so the money in politics issue subsides somewhat…

  • Clyde Selner

    We are no longer a capitalist nation, as it was structed in 1900s. We have become whatever is akin to an usury based economy where wealth is being amassed by individuals gambling on the true capitalist’s work, those creating jobs through industry and commerse. 

  • Bill McD.

    I’m finding the radio interview rather maddening.  Tom keeps asking open ended questions about capitalism, but why doesn’t he ask these same type of questions about government.  Can we withstand the onslaught of federal regulations? Who can understand our thousands of pages in the tax code?  How do scandals like Solyndra hurt our republic?  Mitt Romney while at Bain Capital picked winners and losers with private money, President Obama has made many similar bets on green energy and technology – is this a wise use of federal taxpayer money.  Are we starting to see benefits from the trade agreements recently signed with Columbia?  We saw recently that Canada has lowered some of its tax rates, would the U.S. start to see an inflow of capital if its tax rate structure was lowered and simplified? I could go on, but I know the likelihood of Tom asking any of these questions is slim to none.

    • Still Here

      Exactly!

    • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

      Bill,

      Can you be specific about this onslaught of regulations, please?

      Neil

      • Christopher Bieda

        Can we go to a library once a year and weigh the Code of Federal Regulations?  If the Government Printing Office doesn’t mess around with paper weight, it should provide evidence, over time, about the amount of regulation imposed on everyone.

      • Modavations

        NLRB denied Boeing’s move to the right to work state of S.Carolina.I don’t know how many thousands of jobs were lost

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Meds NOT working?  That why you can’t get your facts straight, or stop making spelling, grammar, and other mistakes that a college-educated (?) individual should not?

          • bellavida

            Of course he went to college…he took a $40,000 pay-cut, remember? 

          • Modavations

            What do I call a man/woman who posts,moda needs meds,moda needs mercury.I call him a stalker in womens clothing.

    • Eric

      Scandals like Solyndra hurting our Republic? Wow. Try some scale. Solyndra cost under 600 M dollars. The Iraq war cost Trillions and thousands of American lives…

      • Terry Tree Tree

        But Solyndra was SOOO much bigger of a part of the U.S. economy, to the ‘conservatives’!?

        • Modavations

          Have you found Corzines(DemNJ)1.2billion bucks yet.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Are you so deluded, that you think it is the job of a Volunteer Fire Fighter, and Volunteer Rescue Squad member, to track down $Millions? 
               What ‘history’, of an organization less than a hundred years old, is worth $1.6 Million?

          • Modavations

            So you claim you were molested by priests to gain the crowds sympathy.Now you want to wear your volunteerism on your sleeve.You give hysterical women a bad name

      • Joe

        and over 100 thousand Iraqi civilians…..

        We need to wake up as a country and change this awful course we are on.

    • Modavations

      Tom blamed Gabby Gifford on the Right.Thomas,the shooter was a hippy

      • Anonymous

        Stop it. You’re posting crap and you know it.
        He was a sick individual who might be a schizophrenic.

        • Modavations

          Listen Jeffe,I heard the show and stand by my charge

    • Roger Jagoda

      Bill,

      Ah yes, you’ve discovered that Tom really just wanted to provide the Obama campaign a free commercial. So much for the Independence of Public Radio. But remember, they are forever feeding at that trough so they will always promote (at our expense I’m affraid) a larger government footprint. It is our Government, after all, that pays them to do it with the outdated subsidies to NPR et al.

      Of course, you’re right, and the guest pointed it out, it’s not just the Right’s “no taxes” stand, it is also the Left’s “no cuts” stand. Both are probably no longer workable, and we have other issues as well. For Tom to promote one side or the other, which he clearly does today, is another reason why NPR should no longer receive any federal subsidies.

      • Anonymous

        No it is not, get real or stop listening to On Point.

    • Steve Karasek

      I’m not so sure either way works… the collapse occurred due to the left’s selective regulation, which allowed timber to be left on the ground, and the right’s selective deregulation, which lit it all on fire.

      Solyndra is the result of the government trying to play venture capitalist. Considering that far less than 10% of the companies invested in failed, any venture capitalist would DROOL at the results gleaned. Don’t get me started on Bush’s TARP or Bernake’s secret loans, which were far worse than Solyndra by three and five orders of magnitude, respectively.
      Should the government be investing in technology? It has been doing so for the past hundred years, and has given us nuclear power, IC’s, GPS, miniaturized computers, amongst other world shattering inventions. What most people know as the “development cycle” is the third phase of the process. The first two are the “pure knowledge cycle”, and “advanced development cycle”.  The first is pure research; incredibly risky and by nature never profitable. The second is very risky, only creating a prototype of a prototype, a proof-of-concept of scientific principle. However, without both phases paid for, the third phase, the product development cycle, could never begin.

      No company in recent history invests in pure knowledge, except for the few research grants that pale in comparison to government grants. The one possible exception would be for the human genome project, which private companies only got into after government bankrolled the expensive preliminary steps. It would be like if Steve Jobs started Apple with venture funding, and then someone invested right before the Apple II came out.

      Advanced development is very uncommon, but occurs at larger companies not run by their accounting departments, and smaller startups trying to change the world in some way. No disrespect intended for accountants, but when the company is run by the penny-wise yet pound-foolish, stagnation and sometimes death spiral ensues.

      If you’re involved with research at any level, you already know this, and I hope I’m not repeating anything you are already aware of. But several friends of mine that went into finance (rather than sticking to science-ing) tell me that they know about the “development cycle”, without ever mentioning the two most important steps.

      • Steve Karasek

        Sorry about the double-post

    • Steve Karasek

      I’m not so sure either way works… the collapse occurred due to the left’s selective regulation, which allowed timber to be left on the ground, and the right’s selective deregulation, which lit it all on fire.

      Solyndra is the result of the government trying to play venture capitalist. Considering that far less than 10% of the companies invested in failed, any venture capitalist would DROOL at the results gleaned. Don’t get me started on Bush’s TARP or Bernake’s secret loans, which were far worse than Solyndra by three and five orders of magnitude, respectively.
      Should the government be investing in technology? It has been doing so for the past hundred years, and has given us nuclear power, IC’s, GPS, miniaturized computers, amongst other world shattering inventions. What most people know as the “development cycle” is the third phase of the process. The first two are the “pure knowledge cycle”, and “advanced development cycle”.  The first is pure research; incredibly risky and by nature never profitable. The second is very risky, only creating a prototype of a prototype, a proof-of-concept of scientific principle. However, without both phases paid for, the third phase, the product development cycle, could never begin.

      No company in recent history invests in pure knowledge, except for the few research grants that pale in comparison to government grants. The one possible exception would be for the human genome project, which private companies only got into after government bankrolled the expensive preliminary steps. It would be like if Steve Jobs started Apple with venture funding, and then someone invested right before the Apple II came out.

      Advanced development is very uncommon, but occurs at larger companies not run by their accounting departments, and smaller startups trying to change the world in some way. No disrespect intended for accountants, but when the company is run by the penny-wise yet pound-foolish, stagnation and sometimes death spiral ensues.

      If you’re involved with research at any level, you already know this, and I hope I’m not repeating anything you are already aware of. But several friends of mine that went into finance (rather than sticking to science-ing) tell me that they know about the “development cycle”, without ever mentioning the two most important steps.

  • Clary

    In the 20th century Keynes model was a pivoting point in our economy and the development of a post war growth. In this century, I would like to see our politicians take a strong stand on our falling infrastructure. How do we build a sustainable economy when our infrastructure is falling dramatically behind when it comes to the environmental impact of our current practices and infrastructure.  WE are going backwards, from my perspective the future growth will need to be based on rebuilding america because our infrastructure is obsolete.

  • alitza blough

    First: Money out of Politics. Nothing will change, nothing CAN change until we get the money out of politics. I don’t know how, or I don’t know the best way, just sayin’ Money out of Politics. It’s, perhaps the biggest piece we didn’t have in the system of the 20th century that worked so well.

    Second: Industrialism served us well for the last century, but it’s killing us when it comes to food. The second thing the last century has shown us is that Industrial Food does not work. Look at our health numbers. A lot of that is because we consume empty calories. Even the whole foods, grown on industrial fields are void of key nutrients because of the herbicides we use and how they work. They bind key nutrients for the weeds… and the crops we grow. The have been developed to allow the crops to grow, but the crops are still nutrient deficient.

    Look to Joe Salatin and others for sustaninable methods. Biggest thing about this is moving, dare I say running at breakneck speed, from dumping fossil fuel on our fields. Imagine instead properly composting even half that much acerage. The carbon sequestered… and that never released because no fossil fuel developed fertilizers are used… would make quite the dent in the greenhouse gas situation. Stop proping up an agricultural system that is killing us.

    This will take people, so we put people back on the land in small communities. Not the dirt poor farmers of the 19th century, God bless them, but use technology to make a rural life INDEPENDENT and comfortable.

    Corporations won’t be making money on this view… that’s the uphill battle, but the money will be more distributed… so the money in politics issue subsides somewhat…

    • Roger Jagoda

      Alitza,

      Look, I’m no “crunchie” as I was raised in the City of Boston, but everyone should heed what Alitza is reporting here. There are better ways to do things other than the ways we have now. Our “factory” farms are not only producing poorer food, but they are totally inefficient w.r.t. costs of fertilizers, etc. There’s a great URL here:

      http://newfarm.rodaleinstitute.org/depts/pig_page/new_farm_archives/chris_shirley/index.shtml

      where Joel Salatin reports how combining cattle and pig needs/behavior gets a far better product, uses far less petroleum products, and increases both quality and profit! There is NO contadiction between doing something better (cleaner, non-industrial, etc.,) and making more money. Read the article, it’s just one example of real innovation for the 21st century.

  • Matt

    Limited resources are now driving the world Economy. There’s no going back the 50′s and the era of limitless resources. We’re going to have to come up with some sort of socialist world government that divides fairly our limited resources amongst the world’s population.

    • Roger Jagoda

      Matt,

      Right on target. In the 50s, we were the ONLY large economy left after the destruction of WWII. I really, REALLY wish both sides would stop trying to “go back to what worked in the 50s.” There just isn’t, nor shouldn’t, there be a way to do that.

  • Anonymous

    1.  Of course the stimulus plan worked.  We didn’t fall into a worse depression than the BG One.  Obama’s only mistake was that he openly and mistakenly underestimated the depth of financial disaster that he inherited.

    2.  The top marginal tax rate in the 50′s when our country demonstrated extraordinary growth was 90%.  How can the GOP be so opposed to taxing the wealthy  37%?

    3.  The Romney problem isn’t that he invested in companies some of which failed and he profited in the long run.  Rather, while he talks of taking risk, Bain Capital profited in failure as well as success.  Theirs was a win – win proposition without ever having been at risk. 

    • Terry Tree Tree

      When Obama took office, MUCH of the Debt was hidden.

      2.  The Republicans don’t want the U.S. to thrive?
       
      3.   Romney, and Baine Capital, were NOT engaged in ‘job creation’, that was a sometimes result of their pursuit of profit, regardless of what happened to the company and the employees?

    • Modavations

      Hearsay and speculation.If they’d taken the 2 trillion they blew on TaRP,sTIMULUS 1 AND 2 THEY COULD HAVE CUT ALL US WORKING STIFFs A CHECK FOR 13,000.tHAT’S WHAT i CALL STIMULUS.Of course,Herr Corzine fared well.Is that what you mean

      • Steve Karasek

        The Republicans were the ones who blew all the money on TARP.

        Why do you think I didn’t vote for them last election, after doing so for the previous few?

        • Modavations

          It was paid back with interest.Obama didn’t return it to the Treasury,he spent it.There is no revenue problem.To quote J.Carville….It’s the spending stupid

          • Steve Karasek

            Of course it was paid back- the question was, WHY WAS IT GIVEN IN THE FIRST PLACE. Now the investment casinos _know_ that they will be bailed out, nearly interest free, if they gamble with our farms.

            I’ve had this same conversation before, so I’ll cut to the chase immediately: it should never have been a loan. It should have been VOTING stakes in the companies that could not survive on their wits alone, purchased below market value, equivalent to the value of the bailout required. Otherwise we’re going to see the same damn thing happen over and over again.

            The collateral damage from the crisis was far, far more than the paltry interest TARP recipients so generously gave back to us. You know most lobbied to try and not pay it back, right?

            http://www.businessinsider.com/goldman-sachs-is-not-lobbying-to-expunge-the-tarp-warrants-2009-4 

            That’s the first time I could read the words “Goldman Sachs” without wanting to spit bile. They were one of FOUR banks that decided that the loans they were given were actually loans, rather than a generous gift from the American taxpayer. Whose homes they had gambled on, and in their mathematical illiteracy, lost. I’m generally not a fan of GS, but I have to give credit where credit is due, and hope that maybe they care enough about their reputation enough so that they’ll stop taking out fire insurance on buildings and then burning them down.

            That’s the worst part- when I was looking through some of the financial instruments common to the crisis, within about fifteen minutes I realized something. THEY WERE USING GAUSSIAN (“normal”) DISTRIBUTION. They were attempting to apply a basic concept in electrostatics, that the net charge of the universe remains constant, to whether or not people would pay back their mortgages. David Li was brilliant with his paper, even mentioning some of the problems with his imperfect model near the end. His reservations were completely ignored by everyone on Wall Street whose opinion mattered. How do people that stupid get entrusted with so much?

          • Steve Karasek

            But to answer your problems with Obama? I have no idea why he decided that some of the people directly responsible for the crisis deserved places in his leadership team. But you weren’t expecting any money back from TARP in the form of a rebate, were you? That might have actually alleviated some of the current hatred towards bankers a little.

            To blame Obama for Bush’s bailout, or “secret” fed loan program started by Bernanke under Bush’s rule is ludicrous [1]. Did he spend the interest? He returned it to the Treasury, and spent it immediately. However, it’s like saying that because he wasted a couple billion funding Solyndra and a few of their fellow failed competitors, that it’s worse than the Republican bank bailouts. That strikes me as intellectually dishonest, and possibly ulteriorly motivated.

            At least the stimulus was intended to help non-financiers out, and was potentially effective [2, 3]. Even then, there’s no question that some of the money was wasted. However, TARP and the “secret” loan program started by Bernanke under Bush merely allowed Wall Street and main street banks to survive their fraudulent excesses, and even make money on the government FREE OF CHARGE [1, 4]. I’m all for preventing runs on banks, but keeping the same leaders in power after they have already proven their incompetence is insanity at best, and criminally un-American at worst.

            [1] http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-11-28/secret-fed-loans-undisclosed-to-congress-gave-banks-13-billion-in-income.html

            [2] http://www.cbo.gov/ftpdocs%5C88xx%5Cdoc8893%5Cblog-econstimulustable.htm

            [3] http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-08-03/taylor-contests-blinder-zandi-study-that-stimulus-spurred-strong-recovery.html

  • Anonymous

    The answers are not that complicated. Money has to get out of politics – that is number one  to unjam Congress. Number two, we can never go back to the way we were – there are too many people on the planet now and China is a world dominance. To get on track, Democracy has to be strengthened in order to give all stakeholders power and keep everyone engaged. Education is the backbone of Democracy.  If we go back we should reignite the drive we mustered to go to the moon. We need clean, alternative energy. So does the world. We still have the educated workforce for making that happen. If we don’t use our education and our ingenuity, we will lose this window of opportunity because we’ll also lose the brains. And this will impoverish us. Globalization has hit us hard. We have to create a new economy and what could be better than the clean energy we need so badly and a world that is dying to buy it.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      RIGHT ON!!   Why would we worry about the Mid-East, if we didn’t need their oil? 
          HOW is it National Energy Security, to depend on imports of ANY energy source, when we could be Energy INDEPENDENT, within ten years of a properly run Infrastructure Upgrade, which is needed anyway?

      • Joe

        We don’t even use much of their oil….most comes from Canada and Venezuela.

        But Exon and Shell need their oil and that’s why we went looking for “nuclear weapons”

        Total sham and these people who took us there should rot in a jail cell till the end.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          I AGREE!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1439572620 Joe Lee

    Another element that contributes to the ability of an influential few to concentrate influence and the clash between corporate interests and the interests of individuals is the party system.

    We have a minority that wields the power to select candidates that the majority end up voting for in the election. What this gives us is extremists in positions of power. 

    The majority of the people are somewhere in the center. However we end up having to choose between candidates that are chosen by extremists. 

    Every centrist candidate ends up getting scuttled after a handful of caucuses and primaries. Just look at people like Huntsman and Romer in this election, or Bradley in the 2008 election. All of them are centrists, and I would love to be able to vote for any of them over the current crop, but they never made it out of the gate.

    • Four Elements

      Absolutely perfectly said!

  • Bill McD.

    Why do the guests think that government bureaucrats think that they would do a good job of planning the economy? Do they really think that a new agency and a slew of planners in DC really benefit America? Do they think that there is a shortage of economists inside the Federal government?

    • Ray in VT

      I don’t think that much of anyone wants the government in America to plan the economy.  The sort of planned economic model with state monopolies has not worked.  However, I’m in favor of a government agency that keeps an eye out for companies or industries that are blatantly cheating and abusing the populace.

    • Anonymous

      This position is rebutted in 3 words: Interstate Highway System. 

    • TFRX

      There’s a shortage of elected officials in Washington who actually want governance. (And let’s not play the game of false equivalence.)

      Remember when reasonable Republicans did their best to make government work? My twenty-something nephew can only read about it history books.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    Lobbyists don’t want to build up America – they want to suck whatever they can out of it. Because the people they work for just want to suck whatever they can out of it. Meaning no investment, no infrastructure renewal – just policies that bleed money.

  • jim

    Free market capitalism = inequality

    whoever differ are flatly lying their bloody arse.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1439572620 Joe Lee

      Actually, true free market capitalism is equal. However we do not have a truly free market. 

      I doubt anyone really wants a truly free market, even the people who have elevated it to a religion. 

      The capitalism we have is a regulated capitalism. Everyone agrees (even if they don’t admit to it openly) that we need regulation. The disagreement and the inequality comes in what regulations to implement, and universally, everyone wants regulations that are to their own benefit over all others.

  • Ted

    You ought to be worried about what’s coming. 

    We are going to smash your corrupt system in a trillion pieces.

    • Modavations

      Ah yes 21 yr. old Dems. in high dudgeon.Have you ever shot a pistol?

      • Ted

         We don’t need violence.

        Just refuse to participate and the whole corrupt system will be brought down.

        • Anonymous

          No it wont. It will ignore you and keep on going. I heard this same idea on the Travis Smiley show last night. He had an very good panel on inequality on his show.  Suze Orman of all people said something to this extent. However I’m not so optimistic in this regard. As George Carlin once said the owners of this country wont let the people have any control, they will give us the illusion of it, but in the end it belongs to them.

          • Ted

            When millions and millions refuse to use their criminal banks, when millions and millions refuse to work in their minimum wage jobs with no benefits, when millions and millions refuse to watch their propaganda, when millions and millions grow their own food and get off the grid, when millions and millions refuse to buy junk from Asia, when millions and millions stop being scared of the criminal elite and fight back it will change. 

          • Modavations

            College kid prattle

          • Modavations

            id you see George’s bit on Global Warming?I liked that guy

          • Terry Tree Tree

            I MISS George Carlin!

        • Terry Tree Tree

          HOW??

    • Anonymous

      And then what. Idle threats like this are nothing more than a diatribe designed to vent ones own frustrations with a system that they have no control of.

      • Ted

        We won’t live in chains. 

        We are withdrawing from their corrupt system.

        If you can’t imagine it then you can continue to be the slave of the criminal elite if you want to be.

        • Anonymous

          Pretty dramatic. So I guess you being online and using a computer is not being a slave to the system.
          If you’re going to go off grid why not do it. By the way I hear the North East Kingdom in Vermont is a good area for this, but bare in mind the winters are hard.
          You better get along with your neighbors in case you’re house or trailer catches on fire. You will also need a few guns and some real knowledge on how to grow food in such a Northern climate.

      • Modavations

        Bravo

    • Modavations

      If you think we’re gonna allow the Gas Chamber,the Gulag and the reeducation camp of the left,you’re mistaken

  • Modavations

    Everyone of those Chinese had a gun pointed at their heads, when they said that.Sort of like the mourners in N.Korea

  • Duncan Cox

    Democracy means that all the citizens have a voice.  Traditionally the citizen have been the same as the stakeholders.  Now the citizens are mostly consumers.  The workers are not represented by our process.  Most of the workers in our economy do not have a voice (sweatshops in foreign countries).  I think democracy is no longer a full description of our system.

    • Chas

      Democracy hasn’t described our system since the Plimoth Colony invented the Selectmen to represent its citizens between Town Meetings. We don’t have a Democracy. We have a Republic.

  • Greyman

    USA in 2050: global power or hemispheric power?

    • Four Elements

      Neither. It will go bankrupt and be broken up into 7 or 8 countries. Bye bye federal deficit!

  • Ted

    You ought to be worried.

    We are going to smash your corrupt, evil system in a trillion pieces.

  • Julie Parker

    You sure pick the topics the world needs to discuss!   I liked the brief reference to Scandanavian systems, a restrained mix of capitalism and democracy.  But how about Canada, much closer to our country?   Everything about Canada seems more balanced than the U.S., and, admittedly, more uninteresting and a little dull.  But I’d take dullness over the extremes the U.S. has gotten itself into.   Bravo for the ragtag group of “Occupy Wall Street” group.  They are forcing everyone to discuss the major issues of our times, our own country’s ability to “stay at the top” and defy the Rise and Fall of nations.   Thanks Tom for the superb, timely topics you pick days after day.
    Julie Parker,   Vermont and California

  • Scantin

    When are you going to admit that market rules are missing the target. Capitalists need direction, not more freedom. Their freedom leeds to disasters: garbage jobs, health care costs through the roof…
    Isanyone going to remind the voters how disastrous the republicans like Reagan and George W. Bush were?
    Yes, I live in a communist country: Canada.

  • Anonymous

    Perhaps we need a system where government protects the rights of the 99 percent of us to make a living by limiting the ability of the 1 percent from making a killing.

    There is no doubt that private equity style capitalism with leveraged buyouts produced fantastic returns for a few. Can we afford an economic system that produces these benefits at the expense of so many.

    • Still Here

      How about the 50%?

  • Eliza Strode

    I recommend everyone watch the Bill Moyers interview of Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson, authors of Winner-Take-All Politics: How Washington Made the Rich Richer — And Turned Its Back on the Middle Class. They argue that America’s vast inequality is no accident, but in fact has been politically engineered. For the full video of the new Bill Moyers program Moyers and Co., see http://billmoyers.com/episode/on-winner-take-all-politics/ One can watch all the episodes online or search on the website for the schedule on local public TV stations.

    • Still Here

      This commercial was brought to you by …

    • http://www.dogoodgauge.org The Do Good Gauge

      Great quote by Bill Moyer near the end of this program; If speech is money, no money is no speech.

      • Modavations

        Bill Moyer was a hit man for LBJ.He was in charge of outing gays.Pal, you need help.Study Nota Feminist and Ellen Tibble

        • http://www.dogoodgauge.org The Do Good Gauge

          You must be a hairy beast.  Clogged deep in the drain of this blog is an explanation.  I don’t expect anyone to look for it. That is just plain gross.

          • Modavations

            Are you blogging from Bellvue.That’s some sick stuff son

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Is he the one that outed On Point Comments’ own representative of the ‘Lazeey Fairyee’, Moda?

  • Greyman

    The conspicuous aversion OP’s guests showed for discussing the specific American Constitutional scale for judging profound disputes between economic performance and political circumstance remarkably carries over onto this discussion page. If political paralysis is being cited as a sign of crisis, why is the problem, why are the problems, not being discussed in terms of a Constitutional crisis?  

  • Bruce

    Great show!

    When Reagan famously said that “government is not the solution to the problem, government IS the problem,” it marked the beginning of the end of progress for our brand of capitalism and democracy.

    To a great extent, we have the “Gipper” to thank for the conservative mantra of tax cuts for the wealthy, deregulation for Wall St., and globalization for the multi-national corporate elites–the toxic mixture largely responsible for our decline.

    When you hear the GOP pretenders debate, it is as if they are counting on a peculiar form of American exceptionalism–an exceptional, nearly pathological form of historical amnesia and collective myopia that they hope will propel them to victory in Nov.

    What a careful examination of Reagan’s record reveals should disabuse any rational person of the supply-side, laissez-faire delusion.  In the face of economic reality, the “Gipper” increased taxes 11 times and raised the debt ceiling 18 times, and he still presided over record deficits with the national debt quadrupling to 3 trillion dollars during his tenure. 

    How much more proof do we need that our “mixed economy” requires increased state intervention and social investment if our brand of capitalism and democratic institutions are to survive?

    • Bruce

      Sorry for the multiple posts of same comment.  Must of had a browser problem earlier.

      • Modavations

        It takes 50 Lefty posts to counter one Laissez Faire.No worry’s mate

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Moda, who admits to getting ‘limp-wristed’ about Barney Frank, and other men, is the resident ‘Lazeey Fairyee’ representative?

          • Modavations

            I’ve heard that people molested by Priests often molest there own children

  • Bruce

    Great show!

    When Reagan famously said that “government is not the solution to the problem, government IS the problem,” it marked the beginning of the end of progress for our brand of capitalism and democracy.

    To a great extent, we have the “Gipper” to thank for the conservative mantra of tax cuts for the wealthy, deregulation for Wall St., and globalization for the multi-national corporate elites–the toxic mixture largely responsible for our decline.

    When you hear the GOP pretenders debate, it is as if they are counting on a peculiar form of American exceptionalism–an exceptional, nearly pathological form of historical amnesia and collective myopia that they hope will propel them to victory in Nov.

    What a careful examination of Reagan’s record reveals should disabuse any rational person of the supply-side, laissez-faire delusion.  In the face of economic reality, the “Gipper” increased taxes 11 times and raised the debt ceiling 18 times, and he still presided over record deficits with the national debt quadrupling to 3 trillion dollars during his tenure. 

    How much more proof do we need that our “mixed economy” requires increased state intervention and social investment if our brand of capitalism and democratic institutions are to survive?

  • Wolfger Schneider

    You ask, “Is Democracy up to the challenges of this century”?
    I would say yes if the electorate is educated, well-informed, and believes in ethical behavior.

    You ask the same question for Capitalism and I would have to say NO!.  Individual greed (corporations are individuals)as a motivation is not a good basis for successful and happy communities.

    Democracy does not equate to Capitalism.  I don’t believe that our Constitution specifies an economic system but our Declaration of Independence does promise Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.  Our current form of Capitalism does not optimize those three inalienable rights.  More stuff, the blood of capitalism, does not equate to happiness.  Corporate lobbyist- generated laws effected with bought politicians limit our liberty, and lives are wasted in wars for resources needed by the capitalist economy.

    The need is for a new economics of limits attuned to the sustainable resources available in different bio-regions. 

    Eternal growth required by the current Capitalism is a fantasy understood by anyone who has any sense of reality.

  • Roy

    As I listened to the show, I grew quite frustrated that both guests completely ignored, and Tom never brought up, some of the 500 lb gorillas that are sharing the room with us.
    How can you talk about capitalism and reorganizing our whole society and civilization without addressing the physical limits of our planet? There is a finite amount of resources we can use and no system, such as capitalism, that depends on endless growth can possibly survive in the long run. How can they ignore the obvious impacts of climate change? Evidence is growing that we are very close if not already exceeding the natural limits of the world to sustain us, yet this discussion of organizing our society, which speaks in terms of decades, ignores the topic completely.
    I realize that these topics have been addressed on separate shows, but you cannot pretend any longer that the issues of governance and economics can be separated from realities of the physical world we inhabit. Anyone who seeks to fully address the balance of capitalism and democracy, and pretends to consider the impact of globalization without even addressing Peak Oil, the collapse of global fisheries, global climate change etc., is worse than the bilnd men examining the elephant. At least they each thought they were getting the whole picture. These gentleman must know about these things, but apparently felt they were not worthy of consideration. By ignoring this obvious problem, and framing the discussion as entirely politics and economics, they narrowed the discussion into irrelevance.

    • Fredlinskip

      You must have missed the memo:

      1) In a recession and a global economy, we need to continue to deny global warming exists in exchange for the possibility of short -term profit.

      2) A large segment of our population believes we need not concern our selves about our planet or the astronomical costs of increasing climate related disaster, because the Rapture is on it’s way anyhow, so let’s not sweat the small stuff.

    • notafeminista

      Because no one knows the physical limits of our planet. To claim otherwise is at the very least, intellectually dishonest.  Ehrlich was wrong.

      • Four Elements

        But we can make educated guesses. How can this species survive maintaining such denial? Thanks, Roy!

      • Modavations

        nd Erhlich is professor for ever at Stamford(?).Why do Lefty’s always reward failure

      • bellavida

        So just because we do not know the limits of our planet we can continue to pollute the air and water that is necessary for life on earth?  

  • Bruce

    Great show!

    When Reagan famously said that “government is not the solution to the problem, government IS the problem,” it marked the beginning of the end of progress for our brand of capitalism and democracy.

    To a great extent, we have the “Gipper” to thank for the conservative mantra of tax cuts for the wealthy, deregulation for Wall St., and globalization for the multi-national corporate elites–the toxic mixture largely responsible for our decline.

    When you hear the GOP pretenders debate, it is as if they are counting on a peculiar form of American exceptionalism–an exceptional, nearly pathological form of historical amnesia and collective myopia that they hope will propel them to victory in Nov.

    What a careful examination of Reagan’s record reveals should disabuse any rational person of the supply-side, laissez-faire delusion.  In the face of economic reality, the “Gipper” increased taxes 11 times and raised the debt ceiling 18 times, and he still presided over record deficits with the national debt quadrupling to 3 trillion dollars during his tenure. 

    How much more proof do we need that our “mixed economy” requires increased state intervention and social investment if our brand of capitalism and democratic institutions are to survive?

    • Modavations

      When Reagan died and the hearst rolled down the street,masses stood in awe.You’d think the King of the Cosmos had passed.When Marx died the masses said hallelujah(?)

      • Fredlinskip

        Unfortunately the deluded worship of Reagan and his policies by his disciples is at the root core of the problems our country faces today.
        IMO

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Falsely, evidently?

      • Sam Walworth

        Too bad, when Christ died, he was naked, hungry, thirsty, and had the company of two convicted criminals..  Does that make him any lower than Ronald Reagan?

        • Anonymous

          Yes, Reagan beat him as to total number of convicted criminals that he associated with. 

        • Modavations

          Christ walked past the Dem.Poverty pimps and said you are not inferiors,let me teach you to fish

          • Anonymous

            What a load of bunk.
            By the way Reagen raised taxes about 11 times and the debt ceiling about 18 times during his tenure as president. He also tripled the deficit.

          • Modavations

            When he left the debt-GDP ratio was 3%,”picture perfect”.He reduced the taxes,gerew the economy and doubled tax revenues.20 million jobs were created

          • Fredlinskip

            16 mil jobsunder Reagan
            21 under Clinton.
            GNP grew at a slower rate than Carter under Reagan. Greatest peacetime military spending in history. national debt grew 300% under Reagan.
            IM humble O any economic success during Reagan had more to do with lowering interest rates (in the 20′s under Carter) than any other factor

          • http://reinventing-america.blogspot.com/ ulTRAX

            Moda, are you brain damaged, stupid, or just dishonest? If it’s the former, then maybe you can be forgiven. But I suspect it’s the latter two.

            I’ve already demonstrated back in the November Super Committe forum, that BLS numbers show  Reagan did NOT create 20 million new jobs… it was only 16 million. And his debt to GDP was NOT 3%, his last DEFICIT was 3.1%. But then, trying to show off your college education, you said your didn’t care about the difference between debt and deficit and used the terms interchangably.

            In FY81 Reagan started with a 43.46% debt to GDP ratio and it ended in FY88 as a 65.8% debt to GDP ratio. Gee, if he always ran massive deficits, did you expect the debt NOT to go up?

            SOURCES: TABLE 2.1 THE BUDGET FOR FISCAL YEAR 2012, HISTORICAL TABLES

            http://www.usgovernmentspending.com/spending_chart_1970_1999USp_13s1li111mcn_H0t

            AND THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS “PICTURE PERFECT” DEFICITS OR DEBT. Moda, your idiocy knows no bounds.

          • ulTRAX

            And Moda your FALSE CLAIM that Reagan doubled revenues WAS ALSO DISPROVEN, yet you’re back here making the claim again. Here are those numbers AGAIN from the US Historical Budget Tables… first current dollars, the inflaction adjusted dollars. Of course these revenue figures include two massive tax HIKES during the Reagan years… but then the Right always dishonestly claims those revenues as “proof” tax cuts raise revenues. 

            Table 1.1—SUMMARY OF RECEIPTS, OUTLAYS, AND SURPLUSES OR DEFICITS IN BILLIONS FY81 599,272 FY88 909,238 65.6% increase over 8 years. REAGAN REVENUES Table 1.3—SUMMARY OF RECEIPTS, OUTLAYS, AND SURPLUSES OR DEFICITS ( ) IN CURRENT DOLLARS, CONSTANT (FY 2005) DOLLARS, AND AS PERCENTAGES OF GDP: FY81 1,251.4 FY88 1,421.1 13.56% increase over 8 years.

          • ulTRAX

            Here are those numbers again.

            REAGAN REVENUES IN CURRENT DOLLARS: Table 1.1—SUMMARY OF RECEIPTS, OUTLAYS, AND SURPLUSES OR DEFICITS IN BILLIONS

            FY81 599,272

            FY88 909,238  = 65.6% increase over 8 years.

            REAGAN REVENUES IN 2005 CONSTANT DOLLARS: Table 1.3—SUMMARY OF RECEIPTS, OUTLAYS, AND SURPLUSES OR DEFICITS IN CURRENT DOLLARS, CONSTANT (FY 2005) DOLLARS

            FY81 1,251.4

            FY88 1,421.1 = 13.56% increase over 8 years.

          • ulTRAX

            NOTE TO ALL…. Moda’s LIES above remain,  but the posts proving Moda’s reposting claims already disproven last Nov have been nuked.

             

          • ulTRAX

            REPOST!!!

            Moda, are you brain damaged, stupid, or just dishonest? If it’s the former, then maybe you can be forgiven. But I suspect it’s the latter two.

            I’ve already demonstrated back in the November Super Committe forum, that BLS numbers show  Reagan did NOT create 20 million new jobs… it was only 16 million. And his debt to GDP was NOT 3%, his last DEFICIT was 3.1%. But then, trying to show off your college education, you said your didn’t care about the difference between debt and deficit and used the terms interchangably.

            In FY81 Reagan started with a 43.46% debt to GDP ratio and it ended in FY88 as a 65.8% debt to GDP ratio. Gee, if he always ran massive deficits, did you expect the debt NOT to go up?

            SOURCES: TABLE 2.1 THE BUDGET FOR FISCAL YEAR 2012, HISTORICAL TABLES

            http://www.usgovernmentspending.com/spending_chart_1970_1999USp_13s1li111mcn_H0t

            AND THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS “PICTURE PERFECT” DEFICITS OR DEBT. Moda, your idiocy knows no bounds.

          • ulTRAX

             show more show less
            A Like Reply 0 minutes ago in reply to Modavations 0 Like
            F Replying to ulTRAX Post as … Image ..
            And Moda your FALSE CLAIM that Reagan doubled revenues WAS ALSO DISPROVEN, yet you’re back here making the claim again. Here are those numbers AGAIN from the US Historical Budget Tables… first current dollars, the inflaction adjusted dollars. Of course these revenue figures include two massive tax HIKES during the Reagan years… but then the Right always dishonestly claims those revenues as “proof” tax cuts raise revenues.

            REAGAN REVENUES IN CURRENT DOLLARS: Table 1.1—SUMMARY OF RECEIPTS, OUTLAYS, AND SURPLUSES OR DEFICITS IN BILLIONS

            FY81 599,272

            FY88 909,238 = 65.6% increase over 8 years.

            REAGAN REVENUES IN 2005 CONSTANT DOLLARS: Table 1.3—SUMMARY OF RECEIPTS, OUTLAYS, AND SURPLUSES OR DEFICITS IN CURRENT DOLLARS, CONSTANT (FY 2005) DOLLARS

            FY81 1,251.4

            FY88 1,421.1 = 13.56% increase over 8 years.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Meds, Moda?  The delusions are in control again?

      • Terry Tree Tree

        One would think a college-educated person would do better than this?  Did you say you went to Boston College?

        • Modavations

          I’ll answer when you tell me how many years you’ve been milking the Molesting Priest,please feel sorry for me routine

    • Bruce

      My apologies for multiple posts of same comment.  Think I had a glitch with my browser.

  • Tina

    This is a wonderful discussion!  Thank you!  Can anyone explain WHY so many people are so drawn, instead, to Faux Entertainment News, especially when, increasingly, you can hear that Faux is the source of the economic and political arguments that individual citizens AND politicians make, as if all their thoughts were just channeled?  A really good news source gets you to think for yourself more insightfully; a bad one gets you to spout forth with the cool-aid. My personal theory is that sit-coms have relied on sarcastic humor for several decades now, and that that was done intentionally to acclimate people to being put down and to dreaming of putting others down.  This kind of engagement is a natural for becoming an addictive engagement.  Altho producers may only have intended to addict viewers to their particular station, the news divisions of Faux Entertainment News may possibly have seen how useful this could be.  There are commentators on the station who use sarcastic humor repeatedly to make their points.  Viewers become “addicted” to this tonality and dream of making it part of their own banter in situations in the rest of their lives where they feel powerless.  At first, only the tonality of sarcasm has been acquired; but, soon, the content of the Faux owners’ political and economic views get ingested by the viewers, as well.  Soon, the whole world is deserving of sarcasm for their views that are outside of those heard on Faux.  That could explain why so many Faux viewers and Faux-favored politicians all say exactly the same thing in exactly the same manner with exactly the same tone.  It is NOT real thinking:  it is ingested addictive behavior, almost more than ingested addictive content!!  How amazing except that McLuhan  said that the Media Is the Message a long time ago now.  An extraordinary portion of Faux viewers are tone-deaf to the fact that so many of the points they spout forth, with great belief, are points about policies that will only, and certainly, shoot THEM in the foot (feet?); disadvantage them further, etc.!!  Clear thinkers see this!  Sadly, the President is NOT speaking out loudly and clearly enough, in spite of his great intelligence and ability to articulate.  It seems like early on — maybe in the first month of his administration — he got so trounced upon for being “elitist” that he decided to sound like a man who hardly finished school.  He knows how to think and sound like he does, and he should be demonstrating that to the entire country every day:  it is possibly the only antidote to Faux learning, besides NPR and PBS which too many Faux people are PROUD to reject.  Yikes!  I know my theory is unprovable, but it in my entire life (& I’m old), I have never heard so many people say exactly the same thing, even using the same tonalities and expressions!!

    • Terry Tree Tree

      ASTUTE ANALYSIS!

  • Tina

    This is a wonderful discussion!  Thank you!  Can anyone explain WHY so many people are so drawn, instead, to Faux Entertainment News, especially when, increasingly, you can hear that Faux is the source of the economic and political arguments that individual citizens AND politicians make, as if all their thoughts were just channeled?  A really good news source gets you to think for yourself more insightfully; a bad one gets you to spout forth with the cool-aid. My personal theory is that sit-coms have relied on sarcastic humor for several decades now, and that that was done intentionally to acclimate people to being put down and to dreaming of putting others down.  This kind of engagement is a natural for becoming an addictive engagement.  Altho producers may only have intended to addict viewers to their particular station, the news divisions of Faux Entertainment News may possibly have seen how useful this could be.  There are commentators on the station who use sarcastic humor repeatedly to make their points.  Viewers become “addicted” to this tonality and dream of making it part of their own banter in situations in the rest of their lives where they feel powerless.  At first, only the tonality of sarcasm has been acquired; but, soon, the content of the Faux owners’ political and economic views get ingested by the viewers, as well.  Soon, the whole world is deserving of sarcasm for their views that are outside of those heard on Faux.  That could explain why so many Faux viewers and Faux-favored politicians all say exactly the same thing in exactly the same manner with exactly the same tone.  It is NOT real thinking:  it is ingested addictive behavior, almost more than ingested addictive content!!  How amazing except that McLuhan  said that the Media Is the Message a long time ago now.  An extraordinary portion of Faux viewers are tone-deaf to the fact that so many of the points they spout forth, with great belief, are points about policies that will only, and certainly, shoot THEM in the foot (feet?); disadvantage them further, etc.!!  Clear thinkers see this!  Sadly, the President is NOT speaking out loudly and clearly enough, in spite of his great intelligence and ability to articulate.  It seems like early on — maybe in the first month of his administration — he got so trounced upon for being “elitist” that he decided to sound like a man who hardly finished school.  He knows how to think and sound like he does, and he should be demonstrating that to the entire country every day:  it is possibly the only antidote to Faux learning, besides NPR and PBS which too many Faux people are PROUD to reject.  Yikes!  I know my theory is unprovable, but it in my entire life (& I’m old), I have never heard so many people say exactly the same thing, even using the same tonalities and expressions!!

  • Bruce

    Great show!
     
    When Reagan famously said that “government is not the solution to the problem, government IS the problem,” it marked the beginning of the end of progress for our brand of capitalism and democracy.
     
    To a great extent, we have the “Gipper” to thank for the conservative mantra of tax cuts for the wealthy, deregulation for Wall St., and globalization for the multi-national corporate elites–the toxic mixture largely responsible for our decline.
     
    When you hear the GOP pretenders debate, it is as if they are counting on a peculiar form of American exceptionalism–an exceptional, nearly pathological form of historical amnesia and collective myopia that they hope will propel them to victory in Nov.
     
    What a careful examination of Reagan’s record reveals should disabuse any rational person of the supply-side, laissez-faire delusion.  In the face of economic reality, the “Gipper” increased taxes 11 times and raised the debt ceiling 18 times, and he still presided over record deficits with the national debt quadrupling to 3 trillion dollars during his tenure. 
     
    How much more proof do we need that our “mixed economy” requires increased state intervention and social investment if our brand of capitalism and democratic institutions are to survive?

    • Bruce

      When I posted my comment, I got repeated error messages, so I re-posted. 

      Sorry for the multiple comments–probably a browser issue.

  • Tina

    This is a wonderful discussion!  Thank you!  Can anyone explain WHY so many people are so drawn, instead, to Faux Entertainment News, especially when, increasingly, you can hear that Faux is the source of the economic and political arguments that individual citizens AND politicians make, as if all their thoughts were just channeled?  A really good news source gets you to think for yourself more insightfully; a bad one gets you to spout forth with the cool-aid. My personal theory is that sit-coms have relied on sarcastic humor for several decades now, and that that was done intentionally to acclimate people to being put down and to dreaming of putting others down.  This kind of engagement is a natural for becoming an addictive engagement.  Altho producers may only have intended to addict viewers to their particular station, the news divisions of Faux Entertainment News may possibly have seen how useful this could be.  There are commentators on the station who use sarcastic humor repeatedly to make their points.  Viewers become “addicted” to this tonality and dream of making it part of their own banter in situations in the rest of their lives where they feel powerless.  At first, only the tonality of sarcasm has been acquired; but, soon, the content of the Faux owners’ political and economic views get ingested by the viewers, as well.  Soon, the whole world is deserving of sarcasm for their views that are outside of those heard on Faux.  That could explain why so many Faux viewers and Faux-favored politicians all say exactly the same thing in exactly the same manner with exactly the same tone.  It is NOT real thinking:  it is ingested addictive behavior, almost more than ingested addictive content!!  How amazing except that McLuhan  said that the Media Is the Message a long time ago now.  An extraordinary portion of Faux viewers are tone-deaf to the fact that so many of the points they spout forth, with great belief, are points about policies that will only, and certainly, shoot THEM in the foot (feet?); disadvantage them further, etc.!!  Clear thinkers see this!  Sadly, the President is NOT speaking out loudly and clearly enough, in spite of his great intelligence and ability to articulate.  It seems like early on — maybe in the first month of his administration — he got so trounced upon for being “elitist” that he decided to sound like a man who hardly finished school.  He knows how to think and sound like he does, and he should be demonstrating that to the entire country every day:  it is possibly the only antidote to Faux learning, besides NPR and PBS which too many Faux people are PROUD to reject.  Yikes!  I know my theory is unprovable, but it in my entire life (& I’m old), I have never heard so many people say exactly the same thing, even using the same tonalities and expressions!!

  • Still Here

    Bruce appears to be abusing the democracy of this board.  He must be a corporation. I was going to say evil corporation, but that seemed redundant.  Same with Tina!

    • Still Here

      Now I’m guessing that Tina is just the same corporation as Bruce but is domiciled in a different location for tax purposes.  Damn you H&R Block for creating a taxcode with so many loopholes for corporations!

      • Bruce

        But yes, I do apologize to anyone so annoyed or amused by the glitch that they would impute “evil” motives…or a corporate conspiracy.

    • Bruce

      Wrong again, read my reply above; kept getting system error when I posted earlier and re-posted by mistake. 

      Re-posting of same comment is not my style.  Probably due to a browser problem which I will own.
       

  • Tina

    This is a wonderful discussion!  Thank you!  Can anyone explain WHY so many people are so drawn, instead, to Faux Entertainment News, especially when, increasingly, you can hear that Faux is the source of the economic and political arguments that individual citizens AND politicians make, as if all their thoughts were just channeled?  A really good news source gets you to think for yourself more insightfully; a bad one gets you to spout forth with the cool-aid. My personal theory is that sit-coms have relied on sarcastic humor for several decades now, and that that was done intentionally to acclimate people to being put down and to dreaming of putting others down.  This kind of engagement is a natural for becoming an addictive engagement.  Altho producers may only have intended to addict viewers to their particular station, the news divisions of Faux Entertainment News may possibly have seen how useful this could be.  There are commentators on the station who use sarcastic humor repeatedly to make their points.  Viewers become “addicted” to this tonality and dream of making it part of their own banter in situations in the rest of their lives where they feel powerless.  At first, only the tonality of sarcasm has been acquired; but, soon, the content of the Faux owners’ political and economic views get ingested by the viewers, as well.  Soon, the whole world is deserving of sarcasm for their views that are outside of those heard on Faux.  That could explain why so many Faux viewers and Faux-favored politicians all say exactly the same thing in exactly the same manner with exactly the same tone.  It is NOT real thinking:  it is ingested addictive behavior, almost more than ingested addictive content!!  How amazing except that McLuhan  said that the Media Is the Message a long time ago now.  An extraordinary portion of Faux viewers are tone-deaf to the fact that so many of the points they spout forth, with great belief, are points about policies that will only, and certainly, shoot THEM in the foot (feet?); disadvantage them further, etc.!!  Clear thinkers see this!  Sadly, the President is NOT speaking out loudly and clearly enough, in spite of his great intelligence and ability to articulate.  It seems like early on — maybe in the first month of his administration — he got so trounced upon for being “elitist” that he decided to sound like a man who hardly finished school.  He knows how to think and sound like he does, and he should be demonstrating that to the entire country every day:  it is possibly the only antidote to Faux learning, besides NPR and PBS which too many Faux people are PROUD to reject.  Yikes!  I know my theory is unprovable, but it in my entire life (& I’m old), I have never heard so many people say exactly the same thing, even using the same tonalities and expressions!!

  • Fredlinskip

        30+ years of  “trickle- up” voodoo economics and deregulation have worked astounding well for a tiny fraction of the population. These policies and the deficits that coincided with them obviously did not benefit American populace as a whole.

        Picture this analogy: a big fat guy with a crown on his head is perched on a gargantuan money bag of gold and cash-  
    this represents top 1% in America today.

        GOP mastermind solution for propelling economy forward is extending tax breaks and more policy to the benefit of this same king.

    Anything wrong with this picture?

        Obviously “for and by the people” has morphed to “for and by the wealthy”.

    • notafeminista

      Wealthy defined as anyone having more money than you.

      “My wealth does not cause your poverty.”

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

        Your money does not cause poverty but it creates Economic Trauma.

        • notafeminista

          Fair point.  I do recall Mr. Soros almost single-handedly bringing down Southeast Asia. 

          • Modavations

            You are a one man/woman wrecking ball.Can I sign up as a Groupie?

      • Fredlinskip

        In any economy some folks are going to make some $. I sort of believe that there is room for those actually providing a good or service to make some $. You may disagree.
        What we’ve been doing for past 30+ years has gone seriously awry.
        You may think the current income disparity in our economy is “business as usual”.
        I disagree.

        You’ve a right to your opinion.

        • notafeminista

          You are right on the button.  In any economy some folks are going to make some money.  You just don’t like how much money some folks make because they don’t behave in the manner you see fit.

          Starbucks = good
          Walmart = bad

          • Fredlinskip

            Aside from the Starbucks, Walmart part, I agree with you.

            I have no problem with people making $. I do have a problem with $ in politics creating public policy favoritism for certain entities (mostly wealthy corps).
            Why should oil companies have the right to directly tax American citizens year after year- which is essentially the effect of oil subsidies- for an example?

          • Modavations

            Your animous is profound and pervasive

          • Fredlinskip

            I’ve got to get my persuasive animus back in the real world and do some real work-

            Later.

          • Modavations

            good one F

        • Anonymous

          “income disparity” in the US is good.  I would hate to spend 4 years in college and earn the same as a college drop out!
          Without “income disparity” there is no motivation to better yourself or your community!

          I love America!

          • Modavations

            It is the hope of snatching the golden ring, that makes laizssez faire work.That you may grow as rich as Midas,as rich as Buffet.You are correct

          • Fredlinskip

            I wonder why GOP always seem to refer to Buffet and Gates when making your points. Why don’t you mention Madoff or Sachs execs or Citi-corp execs, or mortgage-lender execs?
            Its not simply the making the $, it’s how it was made.
            does buying an insurance policy on your wife and then bumping her off work for you?

          • Modavations

            Buffet has more money then Croesus,that’s why.80 % of American millionaires are self made men.I don’t lie,my pals don’t lie and  my banker doesn’t lie.You need to upgrade the crew you hang with.Are they all thieves or do you get this stuff from Move On

          • Fredlinskip

            Citi-corps, and Sachs keep you well-informed, do they?

          • Fredlinskip

            You’re right- there should be income disparity.
            An economy where one king owns everything and everyone else nothing is not healthy.
            An economy where everyone earns the same is not healthy.
            There needs to be a healthy balance.
            The income disparity in America today is way out of line for a healthy economy.
            This seems to me an obvious truth with dangerous consequences for America’s future.

      • Four Elements

        When the economic pie is expanding, my wealth does not cause your poverty because there is plenty for all. When the pie is shrinking, as it now is and will be, the wealthy must become so at the expense of the poor.

        • Fredlinskip

          When economic pie was expanding, the wealthy became astronomically so. Part of thing this imbalance  was our country’s enormous rate of borrowing.
          American’s couldn’t stomach the notion of “Tax and Spend”, so GOP was able to morph this into “Borrow and Spend” until now it’s obvious this can no longer be sustained.
          The wealthy, through their form of “class warfare”, have systematically brought our economy to it’s knees to the benefit of no one else but themselves.

      • Modavations

        Back in my College days this was called Penis Envy

        • Fredlinskip

          You say you were a professor?

          Are you one of those perpetual students who never grew up?

          Your comments leads one to wonder.

          • Modavations

            Dude I’m 60 years old.If you’re using ESP get a refund

          • Fredlinskip

            Are you one of those perpetual students who never grew up? (emphasis on “perpetual” and “grow up”.)

          • Modavations

            I’ve been a gem- jewelry dealer since 1980.Before that I was a Croupier

    • Anonymous

      All research has shown that from 1978-2008 both the rich and the poor in the US got richer!

      What is wrong with this! 

      Isn’t this good for everyone?

      • Four Elements

        Bogus wealth based on borrowing and on asset bubbles – not so good for everyone

      • Modavations

        Kennedy.A rising ocean lifts all boats

        • Fredlinskip

          This may have been true in Kennedy’s time.
          It surely doesn’t represent economy of last 30+ years.
          Look around you.

          • Anonymous

            Bottom 99 percent      Top 1 percent
            1922-63.3% 36.7% 
            1929-55.8% 44.2% 
            1933-66.7% 33.3% 
            1939-63.6% 36.4% 
            1945-70.2% 29.8% 
            1949 72.9% 27.1% 
            1953 68.8% 31.2% 
            1962 68.2% 31.8% 
            1965-65.6% 34.4% 
            1969-68.9% 31.1% 
            1972-70.9% 29.1% 
            1976-80.1% 19.9% 
            1979-79.5% 20.5% 
            1981 75.2% 24.8% 
            1983 69.1% 30.9% 
            1986 68.1% 31.9% 
            1989 64.3% 35.7% 
            1992 62.8% 37.2% 
            1995 61.5% 38.5% 
            1998 61.9% 38.1% 
            2001 66.6% 33.4% 
            2004 65.7% 34.3% 
            2007 65.4% 34.6% 
            Sources: 1922-1989 data from Wolff (1996). 1992-2007 data from Wolff (2010).

          • Fredlinskip

            Got it-
             
            Four Elements point immediately below also very relevant to conversation as well,
             no?

          • Fredlinskip

            Meanwhile my personal income is going to be real despairing if I don’t get my nose to grindstone.
            Later

      • Fredlinskip

        I believe your research is flawed.
        Average WAGES of American worker have remained within pennies of what it was in late 70′s.
        Their have been some income groups that have improved in that time, but I would contend that the lion’s share of the benefits have gone to a tiny percentile at the top.
        That’s why growing the economic “pie” is not the answer. We’ve been there done that, and if one believes in a country “for and by the people”, then something has to change.
        IMO

        • Anonymous

          When these things are included (total compensation) and adjustments for household size are made, it is indisputable that the lower- and middle-income earners have experienced a healthy 33 percent gain since 1979, which even progressive Stephen Rose acknowledges.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            While CEOs and other criminals get 40,000% increases in pay for bankrupting and destroying companies?

          • Anonymous

            Please name two or three of these people you are referring to?

            Enough talking points, I want facts!

        • Anonymous

          Meanwhile, the bottom 50 percent of tax earners pay less than 3 percent of the total income tax burden, while they earn over 13 percent of total income. They’re paying less than a quarter of their portion.

        • Anonymous

          The Federal Reserve defines wealth as “all financial and nonfinancial assets, including bank accounts, investments, houses, cars and debt.” And, as G. William Domhoff’s (a noted liberal professor at The University of California, who’s very much concerned with income inequality) study shows, the overall wealth distribution has not changed since 1922:

                         Bottom 99 percent      Top 1 percent
          1922-63.3% 36.7%
          1929-55.8% 44.2%
          1933-66.7% 33.3%
          1939-63.6% 36.4%
          1945-70.2% 29.8%
          1949 72.9% 27.1%
          1953 68.8% 31.2%
          1962 68.2% 31.8%
          1965-65.6% 34.4%
          1969-68.9% 31.1%
          1972-70.9% 29.1%
          1976-80.1% 19.9%
          1979-79.5% 20.5%
          1981 75.2% 24.8%
          1983 69.1% 30.9%
          1986 68.1% 31.9%
          1989 64.3% 35.7%
          1992 62.8% 37.2%
          1995 61.5% 38.5%
          1998 61.9% 38.1%
          2001 66.6% 33.4%
          2004 65.7% 34.3%
          2007 65.4% 34.6% 
          Sources: 1922-1989 data from Wolff (1996). 1992-2007 data from Wolff (2010).

          • Fredlinskip

            Interesting- I see that income disparity with 1%ers doubled between Reagan’s term and end of Clinton’s.
            It would be helpful if we had a more recent # (2010?) but I see that we’ve got a bit of a way to go before we reach the disparity level before Depression. That’s comforting.

            I wonder if you expanded out to say the top couple or 3%, how the numbers would look.

            Appreciate your point. I will make it a point for further study.

          • Bruce

            The above represents wealth/asset distribution vs. income distribution.  Apples and oranges?

            In terms of income distribution, I think it is an indisputable fact that the income share of the highest-earning 1 percent of our pop. has risen from around 8% in the 1970′s to 24% today. 

            When conservatives complain that the wealthy bear a disproportionate burden of gov., they are using the simple trick of citing only the fed. income tax, which is progressive (see Brandstad comment below).

            If you account for other fed. levies like the payroll tax, which is regressive, and considere state and local taxes, which tend to be even more regressive, the wealthy do not at all appear to bear an excessive tax burden.

            The total effective tax rate of the wealthiest 1% equals roughly 31%, while the rate for the rest of the country averages about 29%–a difference that hardly justifies the criticism that wealth in the U.S. is being “looted” or “confiscated.”

            While it is true that the wealthiest 1% have paid an ever increasing share of the fed. tax burden, this is because the share of national income accruing to them has grown faster than their average tax rate has fallen over the last three decades.

            Furthermore, when compared to nearly all the  countries comprising the OECD (the most advanced economies in the world), the overall tax burden in the U.S. ranks near the bottom, as does overall public spending as percentages of the GDP.
              
            It’s important to understand that the shrinking middle-class, declining mobility, and increasing income disparity are real. 

            Sadly, these trends will be exacerbated by many of the proposals that conservatives are putting forward like making the Bush-era tax cuts permanent, eliminating estate taxes, and allowing the wealthy to shift more of their income to capital gains taxed at the lower rate of 15%. 

          • Fredlinskip

            Perhaps a “like” is enough, but I very much appreciate both your apparent depth of understanding of these topics and the eloquence with which you present your views in recent  conversation “threads”.

            And I see others do as well.

          • Anonymous

            I would much rather have 
            wealth/asset than income.

            Income comes and goes based on the value of your work and ideas.  wealth&assets measure how well you have worked, saved, and invested.

              Income inequality is meaningless because as the 
            wealth/asset distribution shows the top few percentage of earners only do so for a few years and a new inventor, or creator pops up with a better idea.

            If this wasn’t the case the wealth/asset information that I give would show that the high earners have ever increasing wealth, which is not the case!

  • Kelly McManus

    1. I agree that business looks out for themselves and that is what makes economy grow and thrive BUT that also means they will take advantage where the opportunity exists
     
    2. Politicians & political parties are looking to increaase their net worth and political power. Money and support from big business wins elections. No one benefiting from the system is going to change it. So they make the “opportunites” for big business instead of making decisions to promote the overall wellness of the country.
     
    3. Businesses should not be citizens. If we could make a political change I believe businesses shouldn’t be able to donate money, only individuals from their personal money. Large donations push candidates to the front and dilute the donations of actual voting individuals.
     
    4. Maybe if we could eliminate that aspect the politicans would make legislation and policy decisions that support both business and the people, not just their campaigns.
     
    Thanks for reading my post

    • notafeminista

      Everyone looks out for themselves.  We comparison shop at the grocery store, we look for good, safe neighborhoods and schools in which to live and raise our familiies, and we participate in activities we feel will benefit us the most in whatever way.  EVERYONE looks out for themselves.

      • Ray in VT

        Yes, we do, but if taken to extremes it is destructive to our communities and society.  Human society requires that we moderate our self-interest if we are to get along.

        • notafeminista

          What extremes precisely?  Where shall we start?  Let’s tell people where to live.  Maybe we’ll dictate what school our children attend (wait…that already happens)  ..instead of letting people decide whether or not they would like to worship the religion of their choosing, maybe everyone will have to be Sikhs?  Or Atheists? 

          Where do we draw the line Ray?

        • Modavations

          Ray a bit of advice.This girl/man is only using half her brain.You’ve been warned

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Some of us look out for the interests of others! 
           If we became selfishly self-interested, people would die!  Others would suffer! 

  • Tina

    This is a wonderful discussion!  Thank you!  Can anyone explain WHY so many people are so drawn, instead, to Faux Entertainment News, especially when, increasingly, you can hear that Faux is the source of the economic and political arguments that individual citizens AND politicians make, as if all their thoughts were just channeled?  A really good news source gets you to think for yourself more insightfully; a bad one gets you to spout forth with the cool-aid. My personal theory is that sit-coms have relied on sarcastic humor for several decades now, and that that was done intentionally to acclimate people to being put down and to dreaming of putting others down.  This kind of engagement is a natural for becoming an addictive engagement.  Altho producers may only have intended to addict viewers to their particular station, the news divisions of Faux Entertainment News may possibly have seen how useful this could be.  There are commentators on the station who use sarcastic humor repeatedly to make their points.  Viewers become “addicted” to this tonality and dream of making it part of their own banter in situations in the rest of their lives where they feel powerless.  At first, only the tonality of sarcasm has been acquired; but, soon, the content of the Faux owners’ political and economic views get ingested by the viewers, as well.  Soon, the whole world is deserving of sarcasm for their views that are outside of those heard on Faux.  That could explain why so many Faux viewers and Faux-favored politicians all say exactly the same thing in exactly the same manner with exactly the same tone.  It is NOT real thinking:  it is ingested addictive behavior, almost more than ingested addictive content!!  How amazing except that McLuhan  said that the Media Is the Message a long time ago now.  An extraordinary portion of Faux viewers are tone-deaf to the fact that so many of the points they spout forth, with great belief, are points about policies that will only, and certainly, shoot THEM in the foot (feet?); disadvantage them further, etc.!!  Clear thinkers see this!  Sadly, the President is NOT speaking out loudly and clearly enough, in spite of his great intelligence and ability to articulate.  It seems like early on — maybe in the first month of his administration — he got so trounced upon for being “elitist” that he decided to sound like a man who hardly finished school.  He knows how to think and sound like he does, and he should be demonstrating that to the entire country every day:  it is possibly the only antidote to Faux learning, besides NPR and PBS which too many Faux people are PROUD to reject.  Yikes!  I know my theory is unprovable, but it in my entire life (& I’m old), I have never heard so many people say exactly the same thing, even using the same tonalities and expressions!!

    • notafeminista

      “My personal theory is that sit-coms have realied on sarcastic humor for several decades now, and that was done intentionally to acclimate people to being put down and to dreaming of putting others down.”

      Such as using the term ‘FauxNews’?   Maybe you should shut off the TV.

  • Anonymous

    When we say remove the money from politics what are we saying exactly? Where does the money go? Answer the money goes into media advertising. If we could agree that this media is nothing more than toxic brainwashing, then progress might be possible.

  • adrian from RI

      Tom, it is quite frustrating to listen to the meaningless prattle of your guests. It is clear that neither you nor your guests can think in principles like our Founding Fathers could or have ever read the book “Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal.”

      A good definition is: Capitalism is a social system based on the recognition of individual rights, including property rights, in which all property is privately owned http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/capitalism.html

      Capitalism and Democracy are incompatible. Our Founding Fathers tried to protect us from democracy. I agree with philosopher Dr. Leonard Peikoff who observed:

      The American system is NOT a democracy. It is a constitutional republic. A democracy, if you attach meaning to terms, is a system of unlimited majority rule; the classic example is ancient Athens. And the symbol of it is the fate of Socrates, who was put to death legally, because the majority didn’t like what he was saying, although he had initiated no force and had violated no one’s rights.

      Democracy, in short, is a form of collectivism, which denies individual rights: the majority can do whatever it wants with no restrictions. In principle, the democratic government is all-powerful. Democracy is a totalitarian manifestation; it is not a form of freedom . . . .

      The American system is a constitutionally limited republic, restricted to the protection of individual rights. In such a system, majority rule is applicable only to lesser details, such as the selection of certain personnel. But the majority has no say over the basic principles governing the government. It has no power to ask for or gain the infringement of individual rights.
      http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/democracy.html
     

  • Still Here

    Look at the Federal Reserve Bank of San
    Francisco research report: The U.S. Content of “Made in China.” , for a view on the current state of capitalism.

    What did they find?

    “Goods and services from China
    accounted for only 2.7% of U.S. personal consumption expenditures in 2010, of
    which less than half reflected the actual costs of Chinese imports. The rest
    went to U.S. businesses and workers transporting, selling, and marketing goods
    carrying the “Made in China” label. Although the fraction is higher when the
    imported content of goods made in the United States is considered, Chinese
    imports still make up only a small share of total U.S. consumer spending.”
    That’s lower than I would have thought.

  • Tina

    This is a wonderful discussion!  Thank you!  Can anyone explain WHY so many people are so drawn, instead, to Faux Entertainment News, especially when, increasingly, you can hear that Faux is the source of the economic and political arguments that individual citizens AND politicians make, as if all their thoughts were just channeled?  A really good news source gets you to think for yourself more insightfully; a bad one gets you to spout forth with the cool-aid. My personal theory is that sit-coms have relied on sarcastic humor for several decades now, and that that was done intentionally to acclimate people to being put down and to dreaming of putting others down.  This kind of engagement is a natural for becoming an addictive engagement.  Altho producers may only have intended to addict viewers to their particular station, the news divisions of Faux Entertainment News may possibly have seen how useful this could be.  There are commentators on the station who use sarcastic humor repeatedly to make their points.  Viewers become “addicted” to this tonality and dream of making it part of their own banter in situations in the rest of their lives where they feel powerless.  At first, only the tonality of sarcasm has been acquired; but, soon, the content of the Faux owners’ political and economic views get ingested by the viewers, as well.  Soon, the whole world is deserving of sarcasm for their views that are outside of those heard on Faux.  That could explain why so many Faux viewers and Faux-favored politicians all say exactly the same thing in exactly the same manner with exactly the same tone.  It is NOT real thinking:  it is ingested addictive behavior, almost more than ingested addictive content!!  How amazing except that McLuhan  said that the Media Is the Message a long time ago now.  An extraordinary portion of Faux viewers are tone-deaf to the fact that so many of the points they spout forth, with great belief, are points about policies that will only, and certainly, shoot THEM in the foot (feet?); disadvantage them further, etc.!!  Clear thinkers see this!  Sadly, the President is NOT speaking out loudly and clearly enough, in spite of his great intelligence and ability to articulate.  It seems like early on — maybe in the first month of his administration — he got so trounced upon for being “elitist” that he decided to sound like a man who hardly finished school.  He knows how to think and sound like he does, and he should be demonstrating that to the entire country every day:  it is possibly the only antidote to Faux learning, besides NPR and PBS which too many Faux people are PROUD to reject.  Yikes!  I know my theory is unprovable and possibly wrong, but it in my entire life (& I’m old), I have never heard so many people say exactly the same thing, even using the same tonalities and expressions!!  

  • Tina

    This is a wonderful discussion!  Thank you!  Can anyone explain WHY so many people are so drawn, instead, to Faux Entertainment News, especially when, increasingly, you can hear that Faux is the source of the economic and political arguments that individual citizens AND politicians make, as if all their thoughts were just channeled?  A really good news source gets you to think for yourself more insightfully; a bad one gets you to spout forth with the cool-aid. My personal theory is that sit-coms have relied on sarcastic humor for several decades now, and that that was done intentionally to acclimate people to being put down and to dreaming of putting others down.  This kind of engagement is a natural for becoming an addictive engagement.  Altho producers may only have intended to addict viewers to their particular station, the news divisions of Faux Entertainment News may possibly have seen how useful this could be.  There are commentators on the station who use sarcastic humor repeatedly to make their points.  Viewers become “addicted” to this tonality and dream of making it part of their own banter in situations in the rest of their lives where they feel powerless.  At first, only the tonality of sarcasm has been acquired; but, soon, the content of the Faux owners’ political and economic views get ingested by the viewers, as well.  Soon, the whole world is deserving of sarcasm for their views that are outside of those heard on Faux.  That could explain why so many Faux viewers and Faux-favored politicians all say exactly the same thing in exactly the same manner with exactly the same tone.  It is NOT real thinking:  it is ingested addictive behavior, almost more than ingested addictive content!!  How amazing except that McLuhan  said that the Media Is the Message a long time ago now.  An extraordinary portion of Faux viewers are tone-deaf to the fact that so many of the points they spout forth, with great belief, are points about policies that will only, and certainly, shoot THEM in the foot (feet?); disadvantage them further, etc.!!  Clear thinkers see this!  Sadly, the President is NOT speaking out loudly and clearly enough, in spite of his great intelligence and ability to articulate.  It seems like early on — maybe in the first month of his administration — he got so trounced upon for being “elitist” that he decided to sound like a man who hardly finished school.  He knows how to think and sound like he does, and he should be demonstrating that to the entire country every day:  it is possibly the only antidote to Faux learning, besides NPR and PBS which too many Faux people are PROUD to reject.  Yikes!  I know my theory is unprovable and possibly wrong, but it in my entire life (& I’m old), I have never heard so many people say exactly the same thing, even using the same tonalities and expressions!!  

  • Tina

    This is a wonderful discussion!  Thank you!  Can anyone explain WHY so many people are so drawn, instead, to Faux Entertainment News, especially when, increasingly, you can hear that Faux is the source of the economic and political arguments that individual citizens AND politicians make, as if all their thoughts were just channeled?  A really good news source gets you to think for yourself more insightfully; a bad one gets you to spout forth with the cool-aid. My personal theory is that sit-coms have relied on sarcastic humor for several decades now, and that that was done intentionally to acclimate people to being put down and to dreaming of putting others down.  This kind of engagement is a natural for becoming an addictive engagement.  Altho producers may only have intended to addict viewers to their particular station, the news divisions of Faux Entertainment News may possibly have seen how useful this could be.  There are commentators on the station who use sarcastic humor repeatedly to make their points.  Viewers become “addicted” to this tonality and dream of making it part of their own banter in situations in the rest of their lives where they feel powerless.  At first, only the tonality of sarcasm has been acquired; but, soon, the content of the Faux owners’ political and economic views get ingested by the viewers, as well.  Soon, the whole world is deserving of sarcasm for their views that are outside of those heard on Faux.  That could explain why so many Faux viewers and Faux-favored politicians all say exactly the same thing in exactly the same manner with exactly the same tone.  It is NOT real thinking:  it is ingested addictive behavior, almost more than ingested addictive content!!  How amazing except that McLuhan  said that the Media Is the Message a long time ago now.  An extraordinary portion of Faux viewers are tone-deaf to the fact that so many of the points they spout forth, with great belief, are points about policies that will only, and certainly, shoot THEM in the foot (feet?); disadvantage them further, etc.!!  Clear thinkers see this!  Sadly, the President is NOT speaking out loudly and clearly enough, in spite of his great intelligence and ability to articulate.  It seems like early on — maybe in the first month of his administration — he got so trounced upon for being “elitist” that he decided to sound like a man who hardly finished school.  He knows how to think and sound like he does, and he should be demonstrating that to the entire country every day:  it is possibly the only antidote to Faux learning, besides NPR and PBS which too many Faux people are PROUD to reject.  Yikes!  I know my theory is unprovable and maybe wrong-headed, but it in my entire life (& I’m old), I have never heard so many people say exactly the same thing, even using the same tonalities and expressions!!

  • Guest

    What should be becoming obvious, is that the rules are changing. What worked for 20th century USA will not work in the 21st century and onwards. The smoke and mirrors of the 2001-2008 years hid the problems, but they are glaring now. With labor, a crucial lifeblood for many of our people, being too expensive and shipped abroad, what will workers do? We can not ignore the ill, poor and elderly. Corporations will not create the jobs they have in the past just by giving them money. A new relationship between government, the people and business must be constructed. We need a change in thinking. Do we want to be more like the UK or do we want to be more like Scandanavia? In any case, we will not be what we were.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

      I think we’re the only people on One Point that knows that 20th Century economics doesn’t work with the 21st Century it is totally incompatible. I am not sure what to change our way of living or our way of spending.

  • Four Elements

    Suggested basis for economic policy: 
    “Determine the optimum balance of public and private ownership and control in each economic sector that would provide the greatest good for the greatest number.”

    Begin with examining the two most critical sectors that maintain a society: finance and energy. Restrict privatization and the profit motive in these sectors to ensure the availability of financial services and energy to all citizens at affordable prices.

    This idea is much too rational to be adopted, especially since it does not involve labeling and sloganeering.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

    How many of you will not have salary raise this year? How many of you are paying more for good and services but your pay check remain the same? if you answered yes on both questions. you are not alone. yes Democracy is great if it can feed an empty stomach. Capitalism is fantastic if Wallmart doesn’t compete with mom and pop’s corner store. if the competition is fair Capitalism will survive.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

      We ridiculed and hated Communism but now Communism is taking over the World’s economy. taking our jobs, taking our last drop of hope in order to survive. We can longer bare it anymore.

      • Modavations

        Communism is in retreat absolutely everywhere.It’s the rise of Crony-capitalism that worries the sane

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

          Crony-Capitalism only started to emerge in America. where I came from cronyism was already in it’s final days.

          • Modavations

            Where is the communist ascension.China is one Tienamen away from Dem-Laissez faire.Police states don’t survive

    • Modavations

      I took a friggin $40,000.00 pay cut

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

        what!!!! That’s too high.

        • Modavations

          I stand by the post

      • Terry Tree Tree

        That’s one of how many?  Did you bankrupt your company? 
            If your pay was  $40 Million, a $40,000 pay cut isn’t much! 
            You’re not on commission?

        • Modavations

          My hysterical woman,I’m the boss,I work strictly on commission.

  • Steve Karasek

    I’ve actually heard that from a lot of people, and aren’t convinced that you’re wrong. But I didn’t vote for McCain due to TARP, and I don’t think that any Republican out there right now would take any steps to make sure that big finance doesn’t keep gambling with our money.

  • Fredlinskip

    Conservatives by definition resist change.

    If our country and economy are doing fine, don’t fix it.

    There are always powerful interests at anytime in any economy or country
    that wish things will remain the same because they have profited and
    will continue to profit by the way things currently are.

    It’s up to the populace that have been exploited by these powers-that-be to bring about change, i.e. progress.

    This is the concept behind Progressive beliefs.

    Progressive policy changes have brought us Women’s rights, civil rights,
    worker’s rights, pollution standards, various protections from
    exploitation, end of slavery, even freedom from the Tyranny of England
    through Revolutionary War. All of these were hard -fought victories.

    In recent decades many of these efforts have been undermined. It’s up to
    us to either lie down and get mowed over by the forces of great wealth
    and influence, join these forces and live by a policy of “let the rest
    eat cake”, or do all we can to bring about change that will again create an America “for and by the people”.

    • notafeminista

      Actually that’s not true.  Entire industries have existed, and then become extinct just during the history of the US.  Where is the outrage for the poor unemployed typewriter manufacturers?  8 track tape manufacturers?  Audio/video cassette manufacturers?

      Progressive policy changes have brought us wasted money (look up Title IX requirements), white flight, and the elimination of merit for pay.

      • Fredlinskip

        It seems, at least in corporate world, most of the “merit for pay” has gone to those at the top. Although we have heard about the great increase in productivity of American worker in recent decades, the only real wage increase has been the compensation of executives at the top- and this has been and still is astronomical.
        This resulting lack of real buying power by the consumer, (lack of demand), is a principle reason attributed to the decline of our overall economy. 

        • notafeminista

          There is no merit for pay.  It is all tenure, seniority and longevity.  If one has worked in a given position for a long time then he/she is rewarded for staying put, regardless of the quality of work produced.

          Again, rich executives do not prevent YOU from doing whatever you wish to do.  Their wealth does not cause your poverty.

          • Fredlinskip

            If their wealth (and I would contend exploitation of American system) is shown to be a principle cause that brings down our economy, then their wealth effects all of us.

          • Anonymous

            Wrong again. All of these chaps listed below failed at their jobs and still walked away with more money than most Americans make in their lifetimes, several times over in most cases. This is not one off compensation packages this is the norm. Nice try though with posting misinformation about how the corporate world works. I wonder do you have any experience in this world?

            Thomas E. Freston, who lasted just nine months as CEO of Viacom before
            being terminated, and left with a walk-away package of $101 million.

            Hank A. McKinnell, Jr.’s, whose five-year tenure as CEO of Pfizer was
            marked by a $140 billion drop in Pfizer’s stock market value.
            Notwithstanding, McKinnell walked away with a payout of nearly $200
            million, free lifetime medical coverage, and an annual pension of $6.5
            million.

            Not to forget Douglas Ivester of Coca Cola, who stepped down as CEO
            in 2000 after a period of stagnant growth and declining earnings, with
            an exit package worth $120 million.

            If anything, pay for failure is on the rise. Last September, Leo
            Apotheker was shown the door at Hewlett-Packard, with an exit package
            worth $13 million. Stephen Hilbert left Conseco with an estimated $72
            million even though value of Conseco’s stock during his tenure sank from
            $57 to $5 a share on its way to bankruptcy.

            Thank you Robert Reich.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Thanks for more examples of Corporatocracy plunder, and all the stolen jobs!

      • Anonymous

        So I guess you don’t count the white flight during the Nixon, Ford, Reagan, and GW Bush presidencies. How convenient.  

    • Fredlinskip

      Sorry, folks, for the screwed up double-post above- (teaches me for trying to “copy and paste” , I guess)

  • Fredlinskip

    Conservatives by definition resist change.

    If our country and economy are doing fine, don’t fix it.

    There are always powerful interests at anytime in any economy or country
    that wish things will remain the same because they have profited and
    will continue to profit by the way things currently are.

    It’s up to the populace that have been exploited by these powers-that-be to bring about change, i.e. progress.

    This is the concept behind Progressive beliefs.

    Progressive policy changes have brought us Women’s rights, civil rights,
    worker’s rights, pollution standards, various protections from
    exploitation, end of slavery, even freedom from the Tyranny of England
    through Revolutionary War. All of these were hard -fought victories.

    In recent decades many of these efforts have been undermined. It’s up to
    us to either lie down and get mowed over by the forces of great wealth
    and influence, join these forces and live by a policy of “let the rest
    eat cake”, or do all we can to bring about change that will again create an America “for and by the people”.

  • occam24

    Kupchan says difference in wages is the main point, and tariffs won’t help.  STRICTLY FALSE.  There have always been low-wage countries.  Just after WW2, Europe was highly skilled and willing to work for peanuts, but American corporations did NOT use Europe for sweatshop labor.  Clearly something was different in our government and in our corporations.  The difference in government was a willingness to impose tariffs, and the difference in corporations was that they were motivated by PROFIT instead of share price.  Profit leads an executive to pay attention to employees and customers.  Share price leads an executive to eliminate labor and play games with stocks and acquisitions.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Interesting!

  • Anonymous

    “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.” (as cited in Padover, 1939, p. 89)
    “. . . whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government; that, whenever things get so far wrong as to attract their notice, they may be relied on to set them right.” (as cited in Padover, 1939, p. 88)

    • Fredlinskip

      Good post.
      Any suggestions how to better inform the electorate?

      • Gregg

        I’d suggest Fox and Rush.

        • Modavations

          General G,Commander of the Liberated Middle States.I’m warming to Newt!!!

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Gregg, I notice Moda gets these delusions of Grandeur about you, too, quite often? 
                Unless, of course, you are in fact a general?

          • Modavations

            Terence,just how many years have you been using the I was molested by Priests,riff to garner sympathy?

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Where did I say I was molested by priest?  
                Do you have to be a VICTIM, to be repulsed by such disgusting behavior?
               Are you defending the child-molesters?   Why do you object to my revulsion of this travesty against vulnerable youth?

          • Modavations

            Good god man.You’ve been going on from day one.I may be niave,but wasn’t that your implication.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            I thought you claimed to be an atheist?  Good God?

          • Terry Tree Tree

            I thought you claimed to be an atheist?  Good God?

          • Terry Tree Tree

            I thought you claimed to be an atheist?  Good God?

          • Modavations

            Not only do you sound like a hysterical woman all the time,now you sound like a busy body hysterical woman.Why did you feel we needed your comment.Please change you name,I constantly think you’re female

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Since you have announced getting ‘limp-wristed’ about guys, including Barney Frank, I feel safer with you thinking of me as a woman.  It’s one of your lesser delusions!
                Wow!  I bet the ladies love to be around you, with those descriptions of denigration!

          • Modavations

            Now let me get this straight.You are actually asking if Greg is a general of the Liberated Middle States.Not only do you give hysterical women a bad name,you are the lamest poster on this forum.

          • Gregg

            I know about all that but I keep saying, “he’s right”.

          • Modavations

            I don’t understand

          • Fredlinskip

            We’ve figured that out.

        • Fredlinskip

          Fox is run by Ailes, who was a political strategist in numerous GOP campaigns before Fox. Their mission statement revolves around GOP messaging.
              On a good day when all planets align I’m sure there are some good interviews now and then. As a steady diet I would think  whoever would watch them on a steady basis or listen to Rush, would be subject to brain dysfunction. Why put yourself through that?
             If you watch cartoon network regularly, you will begin to spout the philosophies of Bugs Bunny.
          Watch Fox and you’ll end up spouting the corporate philosophies of Rupert. It’s inevitable.
          I value my brain, heart, and soul far too much to put up with much of that.

      • Anonymous

        I think everyone should watch news from both the right and the left on TV, so FOX and CBS News.  Also people should read as much from both sides of the isle they have time to read.  If everyone did this we would be a much better informed society!

        • Fredlinskip

          Agree with the reading part. Those who devote their rare free time only to passively watching the talking heads are bound to come away with a disjointed view of reality.

        • TFRX

          Fox and CBS? Left and right?

          Yeah, try again. You’re like the blind pig, except the blind pig knows what to do with the random acorn it stumbles across.

           

      • ockitaris

        I’ve read the news from the right a more hate-filled people cannot be found.   The cream of the crop of rightists applauded  enthusiastically when candidate Perry boated that he executed 200 people as governor,

    • Anonymous

      That is, BY FAR, the most ironic post I have ever read on this site.  I expect unintentionally so.

    • ockitaris

        Who is Padover?   I googled the name – please enlighten me!

      • Modavations

        I think he wrote about Marx.Wait about three minutes though.I have a stalker named Terence who will be along shortly to illumine us.You’ll have to wait till he gets done with the Meds and Mercury riff.My appologies

      • Anonymous

        The above quotes were the cornerstones of Jefferson’s interest in education and the franchise. He placed education as the foundation of democracy and a prerequisite to vote.

        Ignorance and sound self-government could not exist together: the one destroyed the other. A despotic government could restrain its citizens and deprive the people of their liberties only while they were ignorant.

        Jefferson could never completely separate education from government. With the fullest faith in the ability of man to govern himself, Jefferson nonetheless realized the responsibility of self-government could be assumed successfully only by an enlightened people.

  • Modavations

    78 million adults in America are obese.13 million kids are obese.So much for the starving masses.Reported 2 minutes ago from Journal of American Med.Ass.

    • Anonymous

      Where are those food deserts that the Obama’s are so afraid of!

      • TFRX

        Bad job of trolling, even by your standards.

        Once more from the top: “Undernourished” and “malnourished” are not the same thing.

        Whenever you’re ready for grown-up talk, let us know.

        • Modavations

          The Thought Police have arrived.You can’t say that,you can’t do that.I’m from the Politborro,only my thoughts can be correct.Go burn a book

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Moda is from the Politboro?  He’s a mole, and/or a troll?  Only Moda’s thoughts can be correct?   Someone gave him counterfeit meds?

          • Modavations

            Terence.It is often said that people who are sexually molested,often molest their own children.Your thoughts please

          • Terry Tree Tree

            I have read that, and have been told of it, in some cases.   Disgusting isn’t it?   Or do you advocate child-molesting and child-abuse?

          • Modavations

            I’m curious?As you mention your molestation daily and seem to be consumed by it and have probably played the “have pity of me”for years and years,perhaps your children will in turn be subjected to this outrageous behavior.I’m a concerned citizen

          • Terry Tree Tree

            You present faulty evidence.  Bad meds?  Forgot your meds?

          • Modavations

            What an absolute fraud.Repeatedly,month after month, I asked you why you never sued the priests who molested you?I left you an out saying don’t answer if it’s too personal and you never answered.Now you tell me you were never molested.You give hysterical womanhood a bad name.

          • TFRX

            You blather on about a lot of shite, and you can’t back one percent of it up.

      • Modavations

        They are located behind the Berlin Walls the Dem.constructed to keep their chattel locked in those heinous ghettos they ministrate.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

      my 8 yr old daughter is obese per nurse at her school.
      what can I say she was born fat. We didn’t feed her Big Mac’s or Milk shake -  she’s born the way she is.

    • original famous Cory

      78 million is about a quarter of the US population.  Could the other 75% include the “hungry masses” you attempt to dismiss?

    • Kb45

      Did you know that your body can be literally “starving” for basic nutrients when you are obese.  In fact, this is more common in the obese.  Junk food is cheap and remarkably lacking in basic nutrients.  If you are a single mom making $10/hr, exhausted at the end of the day, a stop at the McDonalds drive thru for $5-10 in dollar menu items is about all you can afford…both in terms of $$ and energy.  If you are on food stamps and need to feed your family for $50/week, it’s pretty much sugar cereal for breakfast, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for lunch and mac and cheese for dinner.   

      • Modavations

        Bull

        • TFRX

          Sounds like someone needs to go on the “Nickeled and Dimed” tour.

    • ockitaris

      Sick people are usually the result of a sick society.  Poor diets are the result of bad government policy.  Bad government policy is the result of government being taken over by emotion greed being one of them.  Greed is the result of being insecure that every one in a capitalist system is – the worker can be fired on the whim of the boss the factory owner can be deposed at the whim of fashion in the market place.   So every one wants employment in a business that deals with a inelastic demand like drugs.  The sellers of food try to make there food as close to drugs as they can which have the consequence of damaging the buyer.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

    Poverty is not cause by people who are lazy, Poverty is cause by the people who are elected.

  • Rasata_mp

    Our system is not working.  We need to have a symbiotic relationship between private enterprise and government.  The constitution says, “We The People.”  I don’t think that was meant for us to abolish government when we are upset with it, through the will of the many, but it certainly was meant for us to be involved, improve and make our government and society more efficient.  We are not living in a tyranny as some seem to get so worked up as to almost suggest.

    I must admit to being flabbergasted at the class warfare calls.  The statistics would support that the class warfare has been going in the other direction for the past 30 years.  The wealthiest have gone from 8 to 40 trillion, an almost 3 fold increase in the share of our nations income.  In this recent down turn,  the bottom decile income bracket is unempolyed at a rate of 10 to 1 compared to the top decile.  Class warfare is probably most stridently evident in the fact that our politicians represent almost exclusively the top decile of income earners.

    We spend now billions on elections, while more people go hungry and homeless than have done so in a long time.  We the people are the problem.  We feed on sound bites, we believe half truths, but often cannot evaluate an argument or debate efficiently or factually.  Get familiar with sites like factcheck.org that constantly call out the lies and half truths on both sides of the isle.

    It is not class warfare, it is a goal of equality, equal representation and more equal reward.  After all, do we really believe our CEO’s do up to 344 times more work than their lowest paid employee, whilst in Japan and England this figure is 11 and 22 times respectively?  Hardly!  They certainly have more education and do more important work to the overall health of the company, for which they should be compensated, but the amount of energy they expend is not even double.

    We must remember that equal numbers of people are distrustful of business as there are numbers distrustful of government.  We need to find the middle path.  We need sustainable economy, not wild ups and downs.

    I respect those who distrust socialism, though many seem to have this inflated sense of nationalist pride.  What makes America great is that we can and have worked together toward a common good.  We can be neighbors in the times of greatest strife and persevere together.  America is not great simply because it is powerful and strong.  Those notions will be our vain downfall. 

    Socialism, let’s remember, in recent history has been born far more in democracy converted from communism, than the other way around.  Do not throw the word around as though it will lead to tyranny.  I think you would find that even the most liberal socialism loving Americans would take up arms and die before letting something like that happen.  To say otherwise is just bandying about ignorance.  I as a proponent of socialist health care can abide by a middle path of finding a more efficient free market health system, though I disagree with profit from people’s health.  However, I ask what has the free market done for affordable health care up until now?

    I digress, but my point is that all political systems can work, but inevitably falter due to one common ingredient- greed!  Communism could work without a greedy, controlling few at the top.  I agree, what I like about a free market is it spurs hard work and innovation, the idea that you can get a bit more if you try harder.  Though in communism, this too is an error of greed-before-pride-in-one’s-work type of laziness.  Prior to Reagan, our wealthiest contributed as much as 94% of their income to taxes.  A bit egregious for sure, but the point is that there were prosperous years in there.  This top down approach is a load.  Our wealthiest make more and consequently depend on a larger swath of society to spend and make that money.  Should they not be expected to contribute to the government programs that help that swath?

    It would be nice to have no regulation, but regulation is often the cure to greed.  We have not prosecuted anyone for poor, greedy decisions in the side of our mortgage crisis that created the deleterious financial instruments like CDOs, because what they did was not illegal, just immoral.  So, now we will get more regulation to counteract these possibilities in the future.  Bureaucracy is born out of people not doing what is the right thing to do.  Greed, I’ll do what benefits me, regardless of the impact on others.  Yes, it is more expensive and time consuming for businesses, but what can we expect since corporations are “people” too who just look out for themselves.  Someone or something must look out for the rest of us non-sociopathic entities and government regulation is unfortunately it!

    We need to sit down work together and communicate honestly without anger and vitriol.  These town-hall-your-wrong-yellers provide nothing productive, just a my-way-or-the-highway mentality.  Honest dialogue, a this-is-how-it-helps, this-is-how-it-harms conversation based on facts is the only way forward.  We need to trust in our neutral and unbiased experts more, a little more technocrat, a little less bureaucrat politician.  Government and business are two necessities.  We need to look at them not as adversaries, but partners in a whole and sustainable society.

  • Rasta_mp

    Our system is not working.  We need to have a symbiotic relationship between private enterprise and government.  The constitution says, “We The People.”  I don’t think that was meant for us to abolish government when we are upset with it, through the will of the many, but it certainly was meant for us to be involved, improve and make our government and society more efficient.  We are not living in a tyranny as some seem to get so worked up as to almost suggest.

    I must admit to being flabbergasted at the class warfare calls.  The statistics would support that the class warfare has been going in the other direction for the past 30 years.  The wealthiest have gone from 8 to 40 trillion, an almost 3 fold increase in the share of our nations income.  In this recent down turn,  the bottom decile income bracket is unempolyed at a rate of 10 to 1 compared to the top decile.  Class warfare is probably most stridently evident in the fact that our politicians represent almost exclusively the top decile of income earners.

    We spend now billions on elections, while more people go hungry and homeless than have done so in a long time.  We the people are the problem.  We feed on sound bites, we believe half truths, but often cannot evaluate an argument or debate efficiently or factually.  Get familiar with sites like factcheck.org that constantly call out the lies and half truths on both sides of the isle.

    It is not class warfare, it is a goal of equality, equal representation and more equal reward.  After all, do we really believe our CEO’s do up to 344 times more work than their lowest paid employee, whilst in Japan and England this figure is 11 and 22 times respectively?  Hardly!  They certainly have more education and do more important work to the overall health of the company, for which they should be compensated, but the amount of energy they expend is not even double.

    We must remember that equal numbers of people are distrustful of business as there are numbers distrustful of government.  We need to find the middle path.  We need sustainable economy, not wild ups and downs.

    I respect those who distrust socialism, though many seem to have this inflated sense of nationalist pride.  What makes America great is that we can and have worked together toward a common good.  We can be neighbors in the times of greatest strife and persevere together.  America is not great simply because it is powerful and strong.  Those notions will be our vain downfall. 

    Socialism, let’s remember, in recent history has been born far more in democracy converted from communism, than the other way around.  Do not throw the word around as though it will lead to tyranny.  I think you would find that even the most liberal socialism loving Americans would take up arms and die before letting something like that happen.  To say otherwise is just bandying about ignorance.  I as a proponent of socialist health care can abide by a middle path of finding a more efficient free market health system, though I disagree with profit from people’s health.  However, I ask what has the free market done for affordable health care up until now?

    I digress, but my point is that all political systems can work, but inevitably falter due to one common ingredient- greed!  Communism could work without a greedy, controlling few at the top.  I agree, what I like about a free market is it spurs hard work and innovation, the idea that you can get a bit more if you try harder.  Though in communism, this too is an error of greed-before-pride-in-one’s-work type of laziness.  Prior to Reagan, our wealthiest contributed as much as 94% of their income to taxes.  A bit egregious for sure, but the point is that there were prosperous years in there.  This top down approach is a load.  Our wealthiest make more and consequently depend on a larger swath of society to spend and make that money.  Should they not be expected to contribute to the government programs that help that swath?

    It would be nice to have no regulation, but regulation is often the cure to greed.  We have not prosecuted anyone for poor, greedy decisions in the side of our mortgage crisis that created the deleterious financial instruments like CDOs, because what they did was not illegal, just immoral.  So, now we will get more regulation to counteract these possibilities in the future.  Bureaucracy is born out of people not doing what is the right thing to do.  Greed, I’ll do what benefits me, regardless of the impact on others.  Yes, it is more expensive and time consuming for businesses, but what can we expect since corporations are “people” too who just look out for themselves.  Someone or something must look out for the rest of us non-sociopathic entities and government regulation is unfortunately it!

    We need to sit down work together and communicate honestly without anger and vitriol.  These town-hall-your-wrong-yellers provide nothing productive, just a my-way-or-the-highway mentality.  Honest dialogue, a this-is-how-it-helps, this-is-how-it-harms conversation based on facts is the only way forward.  We need to trust in our neutral and unbiased experts more, a little more technocrat, a little less bureaucrat politician.  Government and business are two necessities.  We need to look at them not as adversaries, but partners in a whole and sustainable society.

    • http://www.dogoodgauge.org The Do Good Gauge

      I’ve been justly accused for my lack of brevity.  Rasta_mp, thank you.  Some thoughts can’t be expressed in a 140 twitter character limit.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

    Capitalism and the market are presented as synonymous, but they are not. Capitalism is both the enemy of the market and democracy.

    • Anonymous

      Our founding fathers were for free markets, not capitalism.  There is a big difference. 

      • ockitaris

        Our founding f____ers were also slave masters. 
        And programed the constitution with the electoral college to emasculate the working class.

  • Michaellong100

    The very core of Capitalism in the western world is no longer functioning. The most bankrupt companies, who have created the most toxic products (Goldman Sachs, J.P, Morgan, Citi) etc are the most profitable. They also contribute most of the cabinet positions in any administration. The derivatives market has created a system where short term profit is outstanding and long term bankruptcy is guaranteed. When 41% of all profits go to a group (Wall Street) that bankrupted itself and a lot of Americans then we have a break down in the system. Wall Street did a great job investing in companies for a long time. Bring back Glass Steagell.
    REINSTATE GLASS STEAGELL – IT worked for 60 years!

    • Terry Tree Tree

      The morally bankrupt companies, too!

  • Michaellong100

    Capitalism and Democracy eat themselves alive when we become so market oriented that you can buy court decisions,  politicians, monopolize all communications, create your own monetary policy (and zero interest loans) through the Federal Reserve. 

    The only product that the western world can create is bad debt. Bad mortgage debt, bad credit card debt, defaulting student loans, fraudulent credit ratings, and bad national debt have become our growth industries. Our new predatory society is so full of financial land mines that few middle class individuals can successfully navigate the matrix of Wall Street tricks and traps that drag working people into poverty. 

  • Anonymous

    In a global economy we’re all linked more than ever. Which supports the age old saying, a chain is as strong as it’s weakest link. All the current economy in the U.S. and world markets do, is make the strong links stronger.

    As a former Republican, I have to admit I’ve seen that the free market policies of the past 30+ years show that greed and ego need to be regulated.

    Ayn Rand’s, objectivism, or rational self-interest, is predicated on rational self-control. We’re living the proof that this doesn’t work. Peer pressure and competition turn the pursuit of one’s own happiness into selfishness. Thus we need regulation of the markets, and people who make up Mitt Romney’s corporations.

    • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/3ETFGMQ3B7VD4AAMILBBEVMCWE JasonA

      A “former” Republican is a good thing to be.

    • William

      Is the problem greed or government interference?

      • Anonymous

        That’s easy.  Greed.  And massive and widespread ignorance of history and economics by our citizenry is also a huge factor.

        • TFRX

          I would like to caveat that: William has strawmanned a question with no right answer.

          “Blame which, greed or gov’t interference?”

          No matter what you say, a William will tell you that any one red-blooded capitalist’s excessive greed is an isolated incident among the billions of noble robber barrons, and likewise any one hiccup in governance (even when that vanishing breed, an Eisenhower Republican, runs it) demonstrates the intractability of the other billion things government does.

          Greed is simply there. Pretending, as Alan Greenspan did, that some financial players are going to behave as Ayn Rand heroes do, is a sucker’s bet. Supposing that any ten “good” companies can balance out what Union Carbide did in Bhopal and what BP did in the Gulf is folly.

          I just don’t want capitalists to whine about being regulated. In exchange, I don’t want their image ads telling us they’re not interested in making every last nickel

          • William

            I don’t see people running to the poor when they need assistance. They run to the greedy rich. Right now it appears that everyone is standing around with their hands in their pockets waiting for the people with the money to generate jobs. Those with money at standing around waiting for the greedy government officials to get out of their way. So we can just all stand around together and ponder our fate.

          • TFRX

            Nice strawmanning. What you mean to say is, People don’t openly revolt against the rich, and when it’s time to pay for society, people expect the rich to pay progressively more.

            That’s not how it’s been as of late. Someone should read you some history.

          • William

            We have the most progressive tax system in the world per the OECD. The problem is not the lack of taxes, but too many foolish people think they can have something for nothing. We are one of the few countries in the world where the “poor” have cable tv, cell phones, cars etc…

        • William

          Greed built this country which for the most part worked out well for us and the rest of the world. Do you think someone in government is not greedy?

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/3ETFGMQ3B7VD4AAMILBBEVMCWE JasonA

    Capitalism is the best of all economic systems….as long as it is highly regulated and taxed. Unregulated capitalism quickly becomes just another form of slavery.

    Didn’t the US already go thru that period in the late 19th and early 20th centuries? Leave it to the Republican rightists to want to turn the clock back 150 years.

    • William

      Why have massive regulations and taxes? FDR tried that and failed. He turned the private sector lose in 1940 and they built the weapons that won the war. No government regulator could have done the same. The failure of the USSR which was the Liberal dream come true should put to rest the idea that Socalism works.

      • Anonymous

        Great.  Let’s do the same thing.  Turn the private sector loose, funded by extremely progressive taxation, and get out of the way.  Instead of weapons we build roads, bridges, and other necessary infrastructure, and provide needed services to our citizens.  That is precisely the progressive, Keynesian plan for rejuvenating our economy.  I never would have guessed you agreed so strongly with it.

        • William

          We have the most progressive tax system in the world so why not just downsize the goverment and see what happens?

          • TFRX

            I’d ask you to prove your assertion about “most progressive tax system”, but it’s not worth the pixels to read your answer.

          • William

            The OECD said we have the most progressive tax system in the world. Do a little reading before you make a fool of yourself.

      • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/3ETFGMQ3B7VD4AAMILBBEVMCWE JasonA

        I seldom see a more inaccurate version of history than yours. It would be interesting to know your take on the financial collapse of 2008. Do you remember the event, and what caused it? Or are you another Republican amnesiac?

        My comment remains valid.

        • William

          Certainly, years of pandering to people that want “something for nothing” i.e. a home, but don’t have the income to pay for it.

          • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/3ETFGMQ3B7VD4AAMILBBEVMCWE JasonA

            Oh really? And who lent them the money? What gun was held to the head of the banks or Wall Stree? You ignore Credit Default Swaps too..more Republican amnesia I think.

            Your reply is irrelevant to the facts and history of the collapse. But thanks for responding. We will have to agree to disagree.

          • William

            Who forced them to fill out (and lie) on their loan application? Did any government agency(s) force banks to give out “shade tree” loans?

      • Michaellong100

        I have never head a more convoluted explanation of Socialism and government spending. Government handing out tax payer money to private companies is Socialism. The exact same thing could be said for Obama’s stimulsous package. In fact, if you choose between  private enterprise, government enterprise and public-private partnership. Public-private always comes out the worst. It is too easy to bribe a government official for the contract. 

        • William

          Then the answer would be to eliminate the goverment official and not worry about anyone receiving a bribe.

      • ockitaris

        You ignore the gun toting elephant in the economy called the military industrial complex that employs millions and circulates trillions of dollars in the economy.  

        • William

          Is the military industrial complex much different than the educational industrial complex? or the welfare industrial complex? How much money have we wasted on the Great Society wealth transfer programs over the last 50 years?

      • Zero

        FDR failed…?  Just start school all over again…even from kindergarten…just start over.

        • William

          If FDR was successful why did the depression become the Great Depression?

      • nj

        You repeatedly demonstrate that you have an almost entirely inaccurate understanding of history.

        • William

          Your lack of facts would indicate you are unable to discuss matters over your head.

  • Anonymous

    New York Times Promotes Freedom for Terrorist

    Sara Bennett, an attorney for convicted communist terrorist Judith Clark, is
    optimistic that her client will benefit from a New York Times Magazine article
    advocating her release from prison. “Did I think they did a good job for my
    client? Yes I do,” she said in a telephone interview. She said she is hoping for
    a meeting with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to ask for clemency for Clark.

    A member of the Weather Underground and its May 19 Communist Organization
    spin-off, Clark was involved in a terrorist assault that left Nyack, New York
    Police Sgt. Edward O’Grady, Patrolman Waverly Brown and Brinks guard Peter Paige
    dead. A website, memorial and
    scholarship have been created in their honor.

    The Times story, “Judith
    Clark’s Radical Transformation,” was written by Tom Robbins, a former
    Village Voice writer now at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism who visited
    Clark in prison and apparently became smitten with her. Clark, he writes, “is a
    model for what’s possible in prison.”

    Attorney Bennett insisted that Clark has shown “genuine remorse,” a theme of
    the New York Times Magazine story, which also emphasizes her attendance at
    Jewish services in prison.

  • Anonymous

    New York Times Promotes Freedom for Terrorist

    Sara Bennett, an attorney for convicted communist terrorist Judith Clark, is
    optimistic that her client will benefit from a New York Times Magazine article
    advocating her release from prison. “Did I think they did a good job for my
    client? Yes I do,” she said in a telephone interview. She said she is hoping for
    a meeting with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to ask for clemency for Clark.

    A member of the Weather Underground and its May 19 Communist Organization
    spin-off, Clark was involved in a terrorist assault that left Nyack, New York
    Police Sgt. Edward O’Grady, Patrolman Waverly Brown and Brinks guard Peter Paige
    dead. A website, memorial and
    scholarship have been created in their honor.

    The Times story, “Judith
    Clark’s Radical Transformation,” was written by Tom Robbins, a former
    Village Voice writer now at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism who visited
    Clark in prison and apparently became smitten with her. Clark, he writes, “is a
    model for what’s possible in prison.”

    Attorney Bennett insisted that Clark has shown “genuine remorse,” a theme of
    the New York Times Magazine story, which also emphasizes her attendance at
    Jewish services in prison.

  • Anonymous

    New York Times Promotes Freedom for Terrorist

    Sara Bennett, an attorney for convicted communist terrorist Judith Clark, is
    optimistic that her client will benefit from a New York Times Magazine article
    advocating her release from prison. “Did I think they did a good job for my
    client? Yes I do,” she said in a telephone interview. She said she is hoping for
    a meeting with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to ask for clemency for Clark.

    A member of the Weather Underground and its May 19 Communist Organization
    spin-off, Clark was involved in a terrorist assault that left Nyack, New York
    Police Sgt. Edward O’Grady, Patrolman Waverly Brown and Brinks guard Peter Paige
    dead. 

    The Times story, “Judith
    Clark’s Radical Transformation,” was written by Tom Robbins, a former
    Village Voice writer now at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism who visited
    Clark in prison and apparently became smitten with her. Clark, he writes, “is a
    model for what’s possible in prison.”

    Attorney Bennett insisted that Clark has shown “genuine remorse,” a theme of
    the New York Times Magazine story, which also emphasizes her attendance at
    Jewish services in prison.

    • Anonymous

      Why post this 3 times. If you are going to post fomr a new source it’s a good idea to link to it. If you ask me you are cherry picking here for an agenda.

      I read this story and I don’t see how the NY Times is promoting her release.  Although it did have sympathetic leaning I did not think that they were advocating for her release. The author of the article was and I kept thinking as I read this what about the victims families?

      She did not shoot the police officers but was found guilty of murder for driving the getaway car. Nor was she charged with a terrorist act. Her being a communist has nothing to do with her being released or are you trying to turn her into a political prisoner.
      If she is eligible for parole I think she should get her hearing. But from what I read it’s going to take a pardon to get this to happen.  By the way she has served 25 years, I’m not sure if she should be released myself, but I do have two minds about it. All I see here is another right wing hatchet job in the making. I doubt she will get a pardon from Cuomo as he’s pretty conservative and was a prosecutor.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tim-Brown/1227104716 Tim Brown

    Did I just hear a guest say that there is no one saying that capitalism doesn’t work? Maybe he should ask the 7% of Americans living at 1/2 the poverty line, about $5,500 a year, if capitalism is working for them.

    I’ll come out and say it, capitalism isn’t working for many of us. The cases made in favor capitalism in the modern era consistently give capitalism all the credit for any and all scientific advances during the past century, discoveries which are the biggest factors in economic growth and rising standards of living. Advocates are happy for capitalism to take credit for the discovery of DNA, computers, airplanes, air conditioning, the internet, etc. but it is in the end only one possible vehicle to distribute new technologies.  Social democracy is as able, if not a better vehicle.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Computers and the internet, were NOT developed by Capitalism, it Capitalized on them!

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Disqus said there was a system error.  Tripple post proves it right?

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Computers and the internet, were NOT developed by Capitalism, it Capitalized on them!

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Computers and the internet, were NOT developed by Capitalism, it Capitalized on them!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1532599902 George von Huene

    Look at the modern manufacturing process, http://youtu.be/kvf29R7nXlM.
     
    What impact is automation having on capitalism? Automation eliminates jobs as much as globalization does. And automation is only just getting started. To be convinced, just look at the progress we’re making with artificial intelligence (ie: Watson on Jeopardy), http://youtu.be/WFR3lOm_xhE.
     
    We all need good paying jobs to sustain a healthy middle class like we had in the mid 20th century. And capitalism needs a mass market of consumers, without which, capitalism doesn’t work.
     
    But maybe it isn’t jobs we need, http://www.cnn.com/2011/OPINION/09/07/rushkoff.jobs.obsolete/index.html.
     
    Alaska gives money every year to all it’s citizens because of oil resources there. Why can’t every American get $10K income every year as a beneficiary for all of our modern automation resources that now exist? Tax capital-intensive corporations that have and continue to do away with with labor in favor of automation by recouping the wages they would have paid if they hired workers.
     
    Then use that money to give back to every American in the form of a negative income tax. So if you earn less than $40K per year, you start getting money back from the IRS up to $10K per year if you earn nothing at all.
     
    We provide a sustainable safety net for every American providing a balance that capitalism requires (like the authors suggest). This system would replace current welfare, unemployment taxes, and food stamps that cause a welfare trap. We effectively deal with the automation problem by recouping wages that would have been paid by companies that are capital-intensive instead of labor-intensive (ie: Google vs. McDonalds). And we preserve the positive that capitalism offers society as a way to promote creativity and reward individual effort.
     
    The current inequalities between rich and poor are not sustainable, and the sooner the rich understand that not changing will be their undoing in the form of a revolution (it happened many times in history and can easily happen again), the sooner we will move into a much brighter future for everyone.
     
    •”Aftershock” by Robert Reich, http://www.amazon.com/Aftershock-Economy-Americas-Future-Vintage/dp/0307476332/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1318781553&sr=8-3
     
    •”Lights in the Tunnel” by Martin Ford, http://www.lightsinthetunnel.com
     
    •”Singularity” by Ray Kurzweil, http://www.amazon.com/Singularity-Near-Humans-Transcend-Biology/dp/0143037889/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1318781698&sr=1-1

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1532599902 George von Huene

    Look at the modern manufacturing process, http://youtu.be/kvf29R7nXlM.
    What impact is automation having on capitalism? Automation eliminates jobs as much as globalization does. And automation is only just getting started. To be convinced, just look at the progress we’re making with artificial intelligence (ie: Watson on Jeopardy), http://youtu.be/WFR3lOm_xhE.
    We all need good paying jobs to sustain a healthy middle class like we had in the mid 20th century. And capitalism needs a mass market of consumers, without which, capitalism doesn’t work.
    But maybe it isn’t jobs we need, http://www.cnn.com/2011/OPINION/09/07/rushkoff.jobs.obsolete/index.html.
    Alaska gives money every year to all it’s citizens because of oil resources there. Why can’t every American get $10K income every year as a beneficiary for all of our modern automation resources that now exist? Tax capital-intensive corporations that have and continue to do away with with labor in favor of automation by recouping the wages they would have paid if they hired workers.
    Then use that money to give back to every American in the form of a negative income tax. So if you earn less than $40K per year, you start getting money back from the IRS up to $10K per year if you earn nothing at all.
    We provide a sustainable safety net for every American providing a balance that capitalism requires (like the authors suggest). This system would replace current welfare, unemployment taxes, and food stamps that cause a welfare trap. We effectively deal with the automation problem by recouping wages that would have been paid by companies that are capital-intensive instead of labor-intensive (ie: Google vs. McDonalds). And we preserve the positive that capitalism offers society as a way to promote creativity and reward individual effort.
    The current inequalities between rich and poor are not sustainable, and the sooner the rich understand that not changing will be their undoing in the form of a revolution (it happened many times in history and can easily happen again), the sooner we will move into a much brighter future for everyone.
    •”Aftershock” by Robert Reich, http://www.amazon.com/Aftershock-Economy-Americas-Future-Vintage/dp/0307476332/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1318781553&sr=8-3
    •”Lights in the Tunnel” by Martin Ford, http://www.lightsinthetunnel.com
    •”Singularity” by Ray Kurzweil, http://www.amazon.com/Singularity-Near-Humans-Transcend-Biology/dp/0143037889/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1318781698&sr=1-1

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Interesting Concept!   I think MOST people would rather be provided with a productive job, that gives them a sense of value to the world. 

      • Zing

        Problem is when you provide people with a job they have no sense of value to the world.

  • revolve

    it doesn’t matter how articulate the president’s message is–the problem
    is the audience who are extremely conditioned, uneducated, stubborn and
    often–completely insane.  The American public.  Obama, even more so a
    truly progressive representative is just bashing his head against a
    brick wall until it is a bloody pulp.  The American paradigm is the
    brick wall.  Tear down that wall America!  You are a scourge on the planet, on humanity. 
    every civilization that that has fallen–Romans, Sumerians, Incas–was
    because the people, refused to change, denied the truth arrogantly and
    stubbornly–even as the train went hurtling off the clif they refused to
    get off–(mixing my metaphors)–the titanic is sinking an you brainiacs
    are sitting on the deck–not even rearranging deck chairs–you just
    refuse to believe the ship is sinking even as the ice cold water creeps
    around your testicles.

  • Yobo

    What a great, great topic!!  Looking forward to reading listener comments.

    One thing I notice off the bat is how the human element is sanitized and de-personalized. It somehow seems to remove any sense of accountability.

    Human psychology and dysfunction are the root of so many of the problems we’re experiencing in the U.S. now. These things happen on both the individual level and on the social level. Somehow, group-think happens and it becomes a trend or a social/political phenomenom. Let’s go back and explore the individual end of the issue, too.

    The guests talk about things like “expectations” and “a sense of hopefulness” and “challenges” but they don’t really bring it home. Why not spell out exactly how it all plays out? Give specific examples. Take us through the clear-and-concrete causes and the clear-and-concrete results. Then do the same thing to explore other aspects of human nature such as a general tendency toward denial of unpleasant realities, the need for some people to control and dominate others, the pathological quest for status (regardless of whether it actually yields a better situation for individuals or groups of people), pure greed, and simple ignorance (and the glorification of it) — these things are rampant in American society now.

    Idea for a future program: I would love to see the same topic addressed from the viewpoint of other fields of study — get the social scientists’ and social psychologists’ take. Then do it again with artists and writers. Then with religious leaders, educators, and philosophers. Etc. I’d also love to hear the same topic (i.e. America, democracy and capitalism) discussed by leaders and thinkers in the developing world (such as China, India, Nigeria, etc.). And then by leaders and thinkers the developed world (such as in Europe and Japan). 

    • revolve

      I love this idea but of course they just like to give us the ‘experts’ who are always shill journalists or economists of some kind–people who have a stake in the status q or who have no expert background whatsoever.

  • Zac

    your guests suggest that politicians stop behaving like chidren and start discussing efficient reform/regulation. Given the dumbing down of american education and sound byte television what is the incentive for politicians to campaign on obviously complicated issues such as efficient reform which will not attract the public as pointed out by all marketing and PR research.

    • revolve

      What we do–along with removing citizen status form corporations and making it illegal for corporations to sponsor candidates is we should make it illegal to campaign in traditional ways on network television and it should be forbidden form news hours–so sound bites will not be the rule of thumb–instead they will be tasked with 1-3 hour shows discussing issues in depth–and debate–and lectures–on independent channels.  In this way the public will need to seek out intelligent channels and pathways to get information.  many people will just drop out of politics all together–thats OK–those are the clowns and buffoons and ignoramuses.  That will leave an educated public voting.  An educated public will not vote in these rapists and killers that we traditionally have usurping power–the imps of corporations.  Some of these forums will be on internet portals such as ‘Forum’ and new pages and on TV channels like PBS and C-Span.  Again, the networks will be forbidden form talking, discussing or mentioning politics.  Independent shows can follow the representative forums that editorialize.  But corporations will not be allowed to speak.  And editorialists should be professors and common folk–fully vetted to ensure they are not taking soft bribes under oat subject to perjury and 10-15 years in jail for taking one cent from an interest group or individual.  rich people will do anything to lie cheat steal rape plunder and kill–for money.

  • Roy Mac

    Happened again this morning.  Whenever some suggests, “Tariffs,” some economist says, Well, noblah, blah, blah.  Tom, would you PLEASE get someone on your show to say the exact reason tariffs are bad for the US, but so effective for all the other countries?  I’m not a dunce; I have a BS in Ecom and a big-time MBA–I can parse intelligent talk.  But I’m not sure there actually is any on this topic.  Thank you.

    • Kb45

      At this point, adding a tarriff to Chinese goods is a non-starter.  Can you walk into your bank where you have a credit card balance of $50,000 and a million dollar no money down, no-doc mortgage that you’re barely making the interest payments on and make demands?  Probably not…never mind that there are interests right here in the US that are making a fortune on cheap Chinese goods that have essentially bought our democracy.  It’s too late.

  • Truegangsteroflove

    I recommend a reexamination of E.F. Schumacher’s “Small is Beautiful.” In it he raises the question of what an economy is for. As of now, the economy is for itself and people are secondary. Add in an elite of the rich and powerful, and they become the justification for everyone else’s struggle.

    Ultimately this is a silly conversation. The system is rigged, we know it is rigged, and any conversation that sidesteps this truth is masturbatory. Since it is done for pay, it’s a little worse than masturbatory, an old profession. Some say the oldest.

  • Shant Alexander

    Can I just break away here and say that “mad as hell and not going to take it anymore” (which most of the people in this country claim to be) is not the way that things get fixed.  “In a state of reasonable disagreement and currently searching for rational solution to the problem” would be a bit more helpful.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Preferred statement!  NOT the way things usually get done, unfortunately!  That would accomplish a reasonable future, with planned steps. 
         People usually wait until anger builds up to explosion, then chaos results.

    • http://www.dogoodgauge.org The Do Good Gauge

      The 99% who say that line don’t make it past the words they stated. 99% of the remaining 1% are stopped at hell’s gate realizing the futility of the effort. The remaining 1% realize the complication and hard work.  They learn to listen and respect various suggestions, they don’t assume one perspective is best or that attention can be commanded. They don’t let failure stop them.  They continue a second, third, and umteem time to reach consensus in the articulation of a civil solution.

  • Harryvalencia

    the problem with us right now is us. We love to spend without having enough, toe eat like pigs and be taken care of when we get sick, but hate to pay for it and dislikes all those that grow our food cheaply because they look and sound different, we love to take advantage of every governmnetal assisstance we can get but hate for anyone else to ge it. We are a nation of hypocrits

    • Ray in VT

      I think that you’ve got a valid point.  Entitlement spending is taking up an increasing amount of the Federal budget.  People complain about it’s costs, but they by and large complain more when cutbacks are proposed.  The truth is that we want a lot of the high cost programs that are run by the state and federal governments, we just don’t want to pay for them.

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Start with entitlements like Corporate Welfare!

    • Yobo

      but the real question is… Why?  Why are we like this? Is there anything that can be done to address these things on an individual level? What can we, as a society, do to encourage a healthier attitude and encourage individuals to take steps toward a healthier lifestyle (including things like you mentioned — physical health, financial health, social/political health)?

      Seems to me there is something basic and universal that can get to the heart of things, something that will not require new “policy” or “incentive schemes” –  but what is it? Where did we lose our sense of balance, our sense of respect (for ourselves and each other)? Somehow we need to re-learn how to balance self-discipline with tolerance for natural human limits and failings (our own and others’) –not to mention just the natural variations you find in any given population.  I’m talking about self-discipline and tolerance on the individual, social and political levels. For example, who decided that we have to work 50 weeks of the year?  Can’t we all agree that this model allows too little time off for normal human beings? Can we agree to work hard, as Americans do, but then also get decent vacations to recuperate and allow time to enjoy the things that matter? (That’s just an example.)

      • Gregg

        What if your “work” is your life’s passion? Why would you ever stop? I don’t know what a vacation is. Making the most of our pittance of time is a full time endeavor.

        • Anonymous

          Good for you. All work and no play makes one a very very dull. People need time off.
          They are more productive if they have time to recharge their batteries so to speak.
          what is interesting is that the Dutch work about 35 hours a week and have more time off than we do and are more productive.
          Working more hours does not mean more production. I remember speaking to a German research scientist who was over hear doing research and she noticed that Americans seem to work to many hours and as a result do not seem to get as much done. Partly this is due to lack of sleep, and partly due to wasting a lot of time on the job.  She did research on sleep.
          It would be better for families if people had more time to spend with them. Life is not about work only.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          MOST people do not work at their ‘life’s passion’, for many reasons.
             You are very lucky, to be able to do so!
              I am truly happy for you! 
              I wish there was a way for everyone to ‘work’ at their life’s passion!  What a wonderful world that would probably be!
             It is a thing of beauty, when you can observe people making a living doing what they LOVE to do!

  • Anonymous

    “Safe for Democracy” – The Secret Wars of the CIA.  

    The CIA has used the phrase “Safe for Democracy” as a defense for over a million murders around the world from its dawn after WWII to today.  The policy has failed, even backfired in most places.  The CIA and the military-industrial-complex has ruined the world for democracy.  People like Martin Luther King spoke out about it with the power of a movement behind them, but they killed him like they killed other opponents around the world including the Kennedys.  THe host and guests in this session seem oblivious to the deliberate move toward world domination that has been held tightly in Washington, Langley, and Wall St. (to use expeditiously use a glossy finish for known individuals and networks) and act like gigantic masses of people didn’t see this coming.  

  • Yeghia Aslanian

    Dear Tom, I love your shows and admire you for what you are doing. I listen to On Point several times a week, whenever I am at home. Your program is a treasure for WNYC. Keep up the good work. We do need some intelligent conversation about serious issues without the commercial chaff. Thanks  NPR member Ydghia Aslanian

    • Heaviest Cat

      Yeghia ,I would say that this was comercial chaff. No challenges to capitalism here or critics of what’s called the “free market” .To me, this is yet another example of “public” radio selling out to commercial underwriters.

  • TomK in Boston

    This is a false topic. There is nothing wrong with our system.

    If you had your climate control set on “max cool” in the winter and you were cold, would you conclude that the system was broken? I hope not. You would say “oops, I had this dial on the wrong setting”, you’d turn up the heat, and all would be fine.

    In the USA, we’ve been turning down the tax dial and the regulation dial for 30 years, and that’s why the middle class is getting so cold. All we have to do is turn them back up, and we’ll be well on our way to fixing our problems.

    Here’s a modest proposal. Why not identify the period when the real income of the middle class was rising the fastest, and adopt its tax rates? C’mon, it makes at least as much sense as all the political raving.

    • http://reinventing-america.blogspot.com/ ulTRAX

      At this point… when We The People are 15 TRILLION in debt… it does no good to long for a time of fiscal sanity. We need to correct for the madness of the Tax Cut Psychos on the Right who cut taxes KNOWING it would create more debt.

      While I personally would not want to see the top tax rate go above 50%, which the Right should embrace since that’s what it was after Reagan cut taxes in 1981… it might have to go higher. It might have to go back into JFK territory: 70% for 10-15 years, just to pay down the debt created by the GOP’s irresponsible tax cuts. The longer the Right continues its insanity hoping a fiscal crisis will be the key to abolishing the New Deal and Great Society safety nets, the higher that tax rate will have to be.

      • William

        Why not reduce spending to 70 percent of the current levels for 15 years? It would be difficult to tolerate the insane cries from the left but eventually even they will see the logic to it.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Republicans have LOTS of bills, programs, and agencies they support, that has waste, fraud and abuse, HAVE THEY cut ANY significant amount?

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Or, are they just HYPOCRITES?

          • William

            I did not say they did. Just cut across the board and call it a day. The Republicans did put forth the Ryan budget but the administration refused to consider it. The adminstration’s budget was shot down even by their own party. At the end of the day, the across the board cuts seems much more fair and quicker.

  • ockitaris

    When are you going to bring a communist on your program?
    You have never examined the cost of making rich men richer.  Or mentioned why the greediest who should get a job or should run the country.    Or that capitalism occurs over time where it moves from depression through monopoly to fascism we saw this in Europe in the 1930s.    Of you cannot deal in this reality because you would loose your job.   And jobs are controlled by amoral people so that the employee usually must take work that destroys the environment or disfigure humans natural social structure of the clan or tribe.   Misleading the public is evil!

    • http://reinventing-america.blogspot.com/ ulTRAX

      OP is one of the best current event news shows out there… but I’ve commented in the past that it has a rather narrow range of acceptable thought… and usually invites mouthpieces that reflect the narrow range of US politics.

      Yes, Thom might on occasion have Chomsky on for an hour. But Thom doesn’t seem to want anyone from the true Left on as a guest for any show. Case in point the recent show on the middle class. Chomsky’s been writing about this for at least 35 years, yet his perspective, or someone like him, was entirely absent. In the process it made a mockery of the entire discussion.

      This raises the question does Thom have an agenda?

      • revolve

        his paymasters do.

  • Heaviest Cat

    yes why was not a socialist or a communist invited on this show to weigh in on the issue? The guest list simply assumes that capitalism is democracy when it isn’t. Is this WBUR’s idea of independent journalism?

    • Zero

      Charlie Rose had Slavoj Zizek who is a Marxist philosopher, but not exactly a communist.  It was a good interview.  But I doubt you will ever get even a Marxist Scholar on here.  Marxism, even as an analytical philosophy, has been thoroughly stigmatized.

  • http://twitter.com/JanFarris6 Jan Farris

    Formula?  Capitalism does not work in a Godless Society.     

    • ockitaris

      Capitalism is godless and amoral.  Who really controls what the preacher says on Sunday – those who can tithe the most in the congregation. 

    • http://www.dogoodgauge.org The Do Good Gauge

      The small daughter of a famous divine was busy with her crayon and pencil, and her mother asked her whose picture she was drawing. “God’s,” she replied. “But, dear, nobody knows how He looks,” her mother admonished. “They will when I’m finished,” said the child. — The Black Book – Adlai E. Stevenson III.  Page 230.

    • Zero

      How so?  I would say financial inequality doesn’t work in a Godless Society–atheists tend to know when they’re being when they’re taking it in the rear and they don’t like it.  Christians don’t mind taking it because they got Jesus in hard times, and when they die, Jesus will whisk them up to Never-Never Land. 

    • http://reinventing-america.blogspot.com/ ulTRAX

      What’s your point? That an amoral economic system that sees everything and everyone, including government, merely as commodities, will self-destruct? 

  • Tedsylvester

    Ted in Ann Arbor: 1. Things started going terribly wrong with our model when the financial levers available to policymakers were all set to fight inflation and to hell with unemployment. Unions were the main cause of labor-caused inflation. Globalization is nothing more than a giant union bust. 2. We will only evolve when we measure the true costs of doing business before we calculate “profits.” Example: the cost in human health and public treasure from “profitable” coal-fired mercury-spewing power plants.

  • PTLibran

    Re:  offshoring of jobs

    What would be some of the likely impact of a carbon tax on brining jobs back to the US?  My thought is that such a tax would increase the cost to ship products back that manufactures would move some of their facilities back to the US.  

    With such a tax, subsidies should be created to assist people of lower income. 

    In addition, it seems it would address the deficit plus mitigate the impact of a warming planet.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      MOST of the solutions to Global Warming, are cuts of pollutants!   Who really stands FOR polluting more?  Do they profit from polluting?

  • Gregg

    Last night’s debate was very enlightening. The notion that Fox goes light on Republicans is so silly. I still like Newt, I believe he has the best solutions, baggage and all. Sue me. Santorum is growing on me. I’m very impressed with Perry’s record. His emphasis on legal reform and States rights is awesome. Ron Paul has a place but it’s not the White House. I really, really want to like Romney, I just don’t. But I will if it comes down to it. As a matter of fact, if a can of dog food goes up against Obama, Alpo gets my endorsement.

    • Zero

      Fox has raised good, tough, and interesting questions during the debates, but wait until the republicans pick their candidate, then it will be soft central. 

      • Gregg

        It wasn’t “soft central” when they broke the Bush drunk driving story on the eve of the 2000 election.

        • Zero

          Watch one Bush interview on Fox.  Then watch one Obama or Clinton interview. Anyone.

        • Zero

          I remember that now.  That story actually humanized Bush more, being that he turned from his alcoholism and turned to Jesus.  Jesus was quite a theme for him that year.  And why wouldn’t be?  This is America where republicans pick their president based on how much he loves Jesus.

        • http://reinventing-america.blogspot.com/ ulTRAX

          Didn’t we already go through this some months ago when you were posting under the name “me”?

          Fox News didn’t actually break this story… is was a LOCAL station, a Fox affiliate, in Maine.

          So the question remains, once the story was about to break nationally… did Fox NEWS spin it to minimize the damage with Bush voters? 

          Inquiring minds want to know… even if you don’t.

          • Gregg

            Carl Cameron Fox News took it nationwide.

    • Modavations

      I’m warming to Newt.

      • Gregg

        I’m souring on Obama.

    • Zero

      Just don’t defend Fox News.  …I don’t defend MSNBC.  You can watch both networks on mute and see that they are propaganda arms. 

    • Anonymous

      I find the level of hypocrisy on these pages to be astounding. Liberal as well as conservative, Democrat as well as Republican, and “left-wing commie pinko” as well as “Right-wing capitalist devil.” Let’s address yours. In your comment above you mention several Republican candidates. I won’t even bother with Paul, Perry, or Santorum. Why waste our time discussing candidates who, as we all know,will never become president? Newt doesn’t have much chance either, but who can resist? I’ll start with him.                                                                 Bill Clinton’s sexual misbehavior in the nineties was unforgivable. For a sitting president to do the things he did, putting his own presidency in jeopardy and distracting the country from more important concerns was stupid and childish. Democrats lined up to support a man whose behavior they would have roundly condemned had he been a Republican. It was as disgusting a display of political double-talk as I’ve ever seen.                                But then there’s Newt, Speaker of The House, Champion of the new Republican majority. Let’s see. Cheating on his dying wife while condemning Clinton’s sexual behavior. Reprimanded by the House and fined 300,000 dollars. Essentially forced to resign the Speakership by his own party. But this “baggage” is just fine with you. Something tells me you would not be so forgiving of a Democratic Speaker, guilty of the same sins. Maybe I’m wrong.                                                        And then there’s good old Mitt, a man who makes John Kerry look like a straight talker. “I supported gay rights before I opposed them.”  “I supported a women’s right to an abortion until I decided not to.” “I imposed mandatory health care on six million people in the most liberal state in the country, and considered it my crowning achievement, but that “OBAMACARE” is bad, bad, bad!!” I guess Republican flipp-flopping (remember that term?) is just fine. I know you’re not crazy about him (Is anyone???), but you’ll vote for him despite his    on again off again liberal health care beliefs? I can’t say for sure, but something tells me if “ROMNEYCARE” had been imposed by Mike Dukakis, or Deval Patrick, or some Ted Kennedy-like Democrat, you’d categorize it as just more liberal, Massachusetts foolishness. Please tell me if I’m wrong.    

      • Gregg

        Yea, you’re wrong. To accuse me of hypocrisy you must first tell me what I think. That’s where you fall short.

        I find your Clinton saga ridiculous. What Clinton did was well beyond cheating on his wife which I don’t condone. I don’t see what Newt’s personal life has to do with anything. It’s extremely shallow. The whole ethics thing is a witch hunt and it was obvious to anyone attention at he time. I’ll bet you don’t even know what he did wrong.

        Mitt is acceptable and I will vote for him if necessary. Obama is a disaster and  must not be reelected at all cost.  Our country as we know it will not survive,

        • Anonymous

           Please explain why you post your comments.  I thought the purpose of this comment page was to share our thoughts on issues. Do you really think I can read your multiple posts and not know what you think? PLEASE!! I may be dumb, but I’m not stupid.              Barack Obama has been one of the most ineffectual, unremarkable presidents of my lifetime. Unlike you, however ,I have every faith that my country will survive just fine. And your acceptance of Massachusetts liberal healthcare champion Mitt Romney was exactly my point.                                        CLINTON ETHICS:  BAD, EVIL, another one of those terrible Democratic presidents our country wasn’t going to survive.                 GINGRICH ETHICS: AWW, leave the poor guy alone . He’s a republican, after all.        True colors my friend, true colors.            

          • Gregg

            It’s about a worldview and political philosophy as well as a record of success compared to a record of failure. Jesus isn’t running.

          • Anonymous

            Is this Moda in disguise? However mightily I try to contort my brain in an effort to understand how anything you just posted qualifies as a coherent reply to anything I said, it’s an exercise in futility. In case you’ve forgotten, I’m addressing the issue of hypocrisy, which is rampant in politics and which inundates this forum. Your’s is particularly disturbing.

        • Anonymous

             By the way, you missed the most salient point about Gingrich. It was his own hypocrisy in publicly berating Clinton over his sexual deeds while engaging in very similar misdeeds, himself. That’s just the kind of disingenuous creep we need in the presidency.

          • Gregg

            He was speaker of the House, he had a duty. 

          • Anonymous

            Hypocritical behavior is a duty of the Speaker of The House? I’ll have to re-read the Constitution.

        • Anonymous

          Please excuse the multiple replies to a single post, but it’s just too “delicious,” as you would say. I’m curious about all this Clinton wrongdoing to which  you refer. Was it the reams of evidence put forth by the Starr Commission, brainchild of Republicans in congress? Years of investigation, millions of dollars spent. What were the findings? Sex in the oval office,… um,…ah…wait, let me think.  

          • Gregg

            Obstruction of justice, lying under oath, using the full weight of government to attempt to influence Linda Tripp to perjur herself in federal court. Attempting to deny Paula Jones her right to clear her name. Atrocious action with Billy Dale and the travel office. Highly unethical behavior with the Rose Law firm, Madison Guarantee and whitewater that was so bad it drove Vince Foster to suicide. And he was a serial abuser of women… for starters.

          • Anonymous

            Yeah, that’s right. Let’s ignore the findings of the Starr Commission. Too inconvenient.

  • Sangria1

    Can we talk about ….
    why we hardly ever had Americans (individuls who are loyal to America “only”, NOT to Israel and/or to their own pockets) appointed to financial and powerful positions … Chairman of The Fed,
    Heads of Financial Committees,
    Head of OMB,
    Treasury Secretary,
    SEC …
    you can add White House Chief of Staff, too.

  • Sangria2

    Can we talk about ….
    why we hardly ever had Americans (individuls who are loyal to America “only”, NOT to Israel and/or to their own pockets) appointed to financial and powerful positions … Chairman of The Fed,
    Heads of Financial Committees,
    Head of OMB,
    Treasury Secretary,
    SEC …
    you can add White House Chief of Staff, too.

  • Sangria3

    Can we talk about ….
    why we hardly ever had Americans (individuls who are loyal to America “only”, NOT to Israel and/or to their own pockets) appointed to financial and powerful positions … Chairman of The Fed,
    Heads of Financial Committees,
    Head of OMB,
    Treasury Secretary,
    SEC …
    you can add White House Chief of Staff, too.

  • Sangria4

    Can we talk about ….
    why we hardly ever had Americans (individuls who are loyal to America “only”, NOT to Israel and/or to their own pockets) appointed to financial and powerful positions … Chairman of The Fed,
    Heads of Financial Committees,
    Head of OMB,
    Treasury Secretary,
    SEC …
    you can add White House Chief of Staff, too.

  • Sangria5

    Can we talk about ….
    why we hardly ever had Americans (individuls who are loyal to America “only”, NOT to Israel and/or to their own pockets) appointed to financial and powerful positions … Chairman of The Fed,
    Heads of Financial Committees,
    Head of OMB,
    Treasury Secretary,
    SEC …
    you can add White House Chief of Staff, too.

  • Sangria6

    Can we talk about ….
    why we hardly ever had Americans (individuls who are loyal to America “only”, NOT to Israel and/or to their own pockets) appointed to financial and powerful positions … Chairman of The Fed,
    Heads of Financial Committees,
    Head of OMB,
    Treasury Secretary,
    SEC …
    you can add White House Chief of Staff, too.

  • Sangria7

    Can we talk about ….
    why we hardly ever had Americans (individuls who are loyal to America “only”, NOT to Israel and/or to their own pockets) appointed to financial and powerful positions … Chairman of The Fed,
    Heads of Financial Committees,
    Head of OMB,
    Treasury Secretary,
    SEC …
    you can add White House Chief of Staff, too.

  • Sangria8

    Can we talk about ….
    why we hardly ever had Americans (individuls who are loyal to America “only”, NOT to Israel and/or to their own pockets) appointed to financial and powerful positions … Chairman of The Fed,
    Heads of Financial Committees,
    Head of OMB,
    Treasury Secretary,
    SEC …
    you can add White House Chief of Staff, too.

  • Sangria9

    Can we talk about ….
    why we hardly ever had Americans (individuls who are loyal to America “only”, NOT to Israel and/or to their own pockets) appointed to financial and powerful positions … Chairman of The Fed,
    Heads of Financial Committees,
    Head of OMB,
    Treasury Secretary,
    SEC …
    you can add White House Chief of Staff, too.

  • Sangria10

    Can we talk about ….
    why we hardly ever had Americans (individuls who are loyal to America “only”, NOT to Israel and/or to their own pockets) appointed to financial and powerful positions … Chairman of The Fed,
    Heads of Financial Committees,
    Head of OMB,
    Treasury Secretary,
    SEC …
    you can add White House Chief of Staff, too.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Fascinating Question!  Most  of us weren’t aware of this condition!

  • Sangria11

    Take that OnPoint Censoring Department

    AIPAC must be classified as a “Foreign Lobby”

  • http://reinventing-america.blogspot.com/ ulTRAX

    I’ve long observed that the Liberals in the US wear democracy on their
    sleeves yet have to operational definition for it.
    In reality they buy into a
    political system that is un- and often antidemocratic. Under our system we can
    have:

    100% public financing

    100% government 100% free from corporate influence

    100% voter-age participation in elections

    100% vote count accuracy

    and a candidate rejected by the People can still be imposed on the nation by
    a Star Chamber called the EC; 18% of the US population will still get 52% of the
    seats in the Senate and have control over judicial nominations; states with about 5% of the population can block any
    amendment, through Gerrymandering a party can get 70% of the Congressional seats with 51% of the vote, and an electoral system that instead of representing the Voice of The People contorts
    it to fit into a narrow Two Party straightjacket. I don’t want to engage in a red herring discussion that we’re not a democracy, we’re a republic. Even a republic is based on democratic principles. Any discussion about “democracy” in the US is pointless because we don’t even have a democratic republic.

    • http://reinventing-america.blogspot.com/ ulTRAX

      It should also be noted that democracy and the market are often considered alike in the sense “dollars” spent are described by some as votes in the market.

      But democracy should be the right of every citizen to have an equal voice in the political realm for no other reason than they are citizens. What they own, their property, is irrelevant.

      In the market, however, that property called money holds sway… and no one has rights just because they exist. Those without money have no voice.

      So it comes as no surprise that the Right, the defenders of those with money, have some dislike, if not distrust… maybe even contempt, for democracy. Big Money considers democracy just another commodity to be bought to serve its own interests. And if the Right has its way, unless “democracy” does the bidding of Money, it must wither on the vine.

  • Philsheridan2003

    You program was somewhat interesting, but our current system is not capitalism. It could best be described as subsidized parasitic piracy for the economic royalty, capitalism for the 99%, without capital.

  • rosebud

    imagine there’s no countries, it isn’t hard to do.
    imagine no possessions, and no religion too….
    when you cling to “what’s not yours in the first place”, millions die from war and “whatever else you can imagine”.
    (BUT you can have a piece of it as long as you share it with everyone else).

    “there you go, be a good little puppy. yes, i love you too.
    that’s a good boy…”

  • Gregg

    It occurs to me the sign in the picture above is selfish and stupid.

    • Anonymous

      That figures. You seem not be the common good type.

      • Gregg

        It’s a platitude that makes no sense. 

        • Anonymous

          What, the common good.
          I guess Thomas Jefferson was wrong then.
          Excerpt from his first Inaugural address.

          During the contest of opinion through which we have passed the animation of discussions and of exertions has sometimes worn an aspect which might impose on strangers unused to think freely and to speak and to write what they think; but this being now decided by the voice of the nation, announced according to the rules of the Constitution, all will, of course, arrange themselves under the will of the law, and unite in common efforts for the common good.


          Government is instituted for the common good; for the protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness of the people; and not for profit, honor, or private interest of any one man, family, or class of men; therefore, the people alone have an incontestable, unalienable, and indefeasible right to institute government; and to reform, alter, or totally change the same, when their protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness require it.

          John Adams, Thoughts on Government, 1776

          • Gregg

            I don’t see how you think I have a problem with “common good”.

            The sign says “Common good not private profit”. That means “I am entitled to your stuff”. The plea to “[sic]occuppy everywhere” means “or else”.

          • Anonymous

            You said that the idea of the common good as a platitude made no sense to you. Now you say it’s the idea of the common good trumping private profit. Well I just posted what John Adams had to say on this very subject.

            Government is instituted for the common good; for the protection,
            safety, prosperity, and happiness of the people; and not for profit,
            honor, or private interest of any one man, family, or class of men;

            It’s pretty clear which side Mr. Adams comes down on in this argument. That the common good of society is more important that the profits of any one individual or busniess.
            That’s what I think he’s saying here. So I guess you and John Adams are at odds with the idea of the common good, I would add with me as well.

          • Gregg

            I referred to what the sign said. Common good was not isolated. The idea of common good trumping private profit make no sense to me. I can’t even get to the proposition because in the context of the Occupy movement it’s all about money and who is entitled to it. 

            John Adams and I agree government should get out of business. Government should not profit. He does not say government is instituted to inhibit or redistribute wealth. He says government is not instituted promote it with bias towards class. That’s very different than your point… whatever it is. 

          • Brett

            Interesting…I believe you really do think the only meaning possibly derived from the sign is, “I am entitled to your stuff” and that ‘occupy everywhere’ means “or else.” It could mean that maybe, just maybe, corporations could at least spend a little more time considering the “common good” instead of only “private profit.” Some corporations have attempted some kind of balance in that regard; is there anything wrong with that? One of the problems with corporations these days (in terms of their business practices) is that they don’t look beyond the next quarter. This cuts into things like innovation, R+D, etc. 

            Striking a balance might also go a long way to curb some of the corporate corruption that exists today. It might also reduce the need for regulation of corporations if they were better at policing themselves (something that, in considering the common good, might just also create more corporate responsibility for their behaviors and actions.   

          • Gregg

            I consider the term “corporations” in and of itself meaningless. NPR is a corporation as are Greenpeace and  and the KKK.

            I think most agree an honest passionate pursuit of excellence creates the most sustainable value, you may not. I find it’s good business.

          • Anonymous

            Wow, you are really digging a huge whole for yourself here. Corporations are legal entities that are part of our rule of law. If you want my advice, stop digging. 

          • Gregg

            “Corporations are legal entities that are part of our rule of law.”

            Duh. But no one is making any distinctions.  The KKK is incorporated in many states. NPR and GreenPeace are corporations. Which model should I use when reading Brett’s comment?

    • Still Here

      The fleabagger can’t even spell occupy.  Common good to him means continued freeloading. 

      • Brett

        Since you can read the man’s mind, are there other extra sensory skills you possess? At the risk of more platitudes (perhaps the kind that Gregg might actually like), what does ‘common good’ mean to a neocon? 

        • Gregg

          I think it more important to define “common good” and “not private profit” as the left sees it. Take is past emotions and think about the actual meaning and implementation. It’s scary.

          • Brett

            That’s why I was asking any righty who wants to respond, “how do you define common good”? 

          • Gregg

            I don’t buy the premise of the question.

          • Brett

            Then I must’ve misunderstood and thought you were implying that lefties define ‘common good’ and ‘private profit’ differently than righties.

          • Gregg

            It’s the word “not” in between them that makes it a selfish platitude.

          • Anonymous

            The common good is the issue, not your interpretation of the sign. It’s clear to me what the sign is meaning even though it’s poorly worded. How is it that I get the idea of the common good in terms of our democracy and how it was used by the founders and you sir do not. It is clear to me that you are avoiding the real issue here and seem to ignore both what Jefferson and Adams are saying on the idea of the common good. 
            In short, you are just wrong on this no matter how you parse that ill-worded sign.

          • Brett

            Gregg, instead of actually giving his thoughts on concepts like “common good” and “private profit,” would prefer to characterize what he thinks those concepts mean to a stranger in a photo (and by extension what so-called “lefties” think about those concepts). Yet I am asking him what he and other conservatives think…he keeps going back to how stupid the sign is?!?! Is he more interested in getting a dig in toward someone/a movement he sees as ideologically different from him than he is in exchanging ideas? Me thinks, yes!

          • Brett

            Again…I am asking for your thoughts on the “common good” and “private profit.” (No platitudes please.)

          • Modavations

            Defense of the borders and that’s it.Leave the social work to the church

  • http://freeourfreemarkets.org Steve Banicki

    Our system is broken but it can be fixed.

    I am a free market conservative. I voted republican in every presidential election since 1968, except one. It is obvious that our government must live within its means and do so in a manner as not to interfere with a functioning free market economy. If we desire to take control of government, we must demand government carry out one of its primary functions; protecting free markets from tyranny, both public and private. We are vocal about defending it from public tyranny, but silent when it comes to tyranny in the private sector.

    “Experience should teach us to be most on guard to protect liberty when the government’s purposes are beneficial. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greater dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding.” Justice Louis Brandeis 1928Today our focus seems to be only on the tyranny of government when it comes to free markets. We need to find the right balance.  More: http://goo.gl/ILvRw

  • Brett

    I’m surprised no righty-tighty belittled the occupier in the above photo for misspelling OCCUPY! You know, “Public education, blah, blah,” that sort of thing….You guys are getting sloppy! At least make an effort for the lefties here, please! Gregg was the only one who had the Ginghrich courage to call the sign “selfish and stupid.” 

  • Terry Tree Tree

    Pay executives $MILLIONS in BONE-USes, to bankrupt a company?  Union workers, wanting to be paid a living-wage for the actual work, that is REQUIRED, if the company is to stay in business, are the problem?
       SHOW ME the executive that works l000 times as much as the average production employee of the same company! 

    • William

      The two guys that started and own Google. It was their idea, their hard work, risk,  so they should receive the greatest rewards.

      • Terry Tree Tree

        I DOUBT they worked 1000 times harder than the best of their employees!

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Correction, their average employee.

  • Brett

    I suppose if neocons think “common good” means “I am entitled to your stuff,” then a neocon thinks “common good” means “I want everything for myself; I don’t want to share anything.”

    • Brett

      …meant to say “neocons think lefties define “common good” as “I am entitled to your stuff,”

      • Modavations

        I would agree with that.Who would spend your money more effeciently.The Feds or youself.No one resents paying taxes.It’s the waste that pisses us off

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1642631486 Marc Hersch

    What do Capitalism and democracy have to do with each other? What does big dog-eat-little-dogs inequality have to do with government by and for the people? 

    “So much better than all the other systems”? Which system does he mean — red tooth and claw Capitalism or hands-joined in common purpose democracy? 

    Democracy can work. Democracy should work. Capitalism can’t work as any fool can see. Capitalism is anti-democracy — an amoral, more for me, damn you and the others, destroyer of the common good, that just keeps going, and going, and growing and growing.

    Democracy is a moral idea and Capitalism is an amoral idea. Capitalism is a democracy killer — an excuse for the rich to get richer at the expense of others. Capitalism kills people economically. It kills in wars of economic adventure. It kills the land and sea and air. Capitalism enshrines the worst of the human spirit as a law of God and nature. It conspires to overthrow any moral structures imposed upon it. It denies the ability of humans to do good. Democracy is all “WE” and Capitalism is all “I”, two ideas about the world that have virtually nothing in common. It’s no wonder people are dazed and confused. 

    The real question we should be asking is: Which will it be: Capitalism OR democracy?

    • Kevin

      Marc,

      You’re confusing two seperate ideas.  Capitalism is an economic system (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/capitalism) Democracy is a governmental system (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/democracy).  These are two completely sperate things!  Capitalism, by definition, is an economic system in which ownership, production and distrobution of wealth is by private individuals or coorporations.  Democracy is a form of government in which the power is vested in the people (or their elected agents).

      So it’s not one or the other.  You can, theoretically, have a communist economic system and a democratic governmental system.  That would be a country where the wealth is owned, produced and distributed by the government and the government is elected by the people.  It’s not very common and it never works, because of human greed, but that’s a different conversation for another day.  Now you can have different varieties of capitalism, such as in europe with more social programs, or the classical liberalism capitalism of the early 20th century, now called usually called libertarianism but, that has nothing to do with the relationship between a countries economic system and their governmental system. 

      What you are, I think, refering to is the traditional role of business, (to create wealth for its shareholders).  This has been increasingly questioned now days whether if that is the best idea.  Should we make the role of a company be to employ as many people as possible while breaking even?  or create as many customers as possible? or a combination of all three?  Should countries be measured on GDP, a purelly economic monitary measure, or literacy rate?  What about measuring them on unemployment rate? or Life expectancy? or happiness of its citizens? 

      Those are good questions to consider…  Becareful in your terminology. 

      -K

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1642631486 Marc Hersch

        Actually, no confusion at all. I am very clear on the difference between the two domains–one an idea about a method for governing and the other a belief about the nature of economic relations. 

        My point is that democratic governance is about common purpose—the common good—and the theory of Capitalism flies in the face of methods that place the common good before individual self interest. 

        These two domains–governance and economic practice—cannot separated. They interact and Capitalism is at odds with the democratic idea of the common good because it accepts in principal that the distribution of wealth, power and influence is natural and good, thereby disenfranchising more and more people who do not reside at the top of the heap. 

        You can read a more complete statement on my blog at: http://www.3sigma.com/democracy-or-capitalism/

  • Gregg

    Regarding the sign, if there is such a thing as a “common good” (first false premise, my good will always be different than yours) then it cannot be achieved by punishing achievement. If that’s the government we want then intimidation through occupation is not the method of choice.

    I believe very strongly the rich are taxed enough, the economy cannot be taxed into recovery and raising taxes further will hurt any anemic recovery to the peril of the “common good”. I believe very strongly everyone is entitled to the fruits of their sacrifice and labor… after taxes. It is better for the “common good” to reward achievement. I believe very strongly civilization is at risk from the rise of radical Islam and we are better off to rid Iran of nukes now, militarily if needed, than to risk full blown nuclear war later. For the “common good” don’tcha know. I believe very strongly we cannot sustain spending the entire economy. Departments need to be dissolved and dramatic cuts made for the “common good”. I believe we need to stop throwing money into the “green jobs” fiasco and quit subsidizing toxic, combustible Chevy Volts. For the “common good”. I guess I should be glad no one is buying them.

    I think you get my point. Reducing all our problems to whining about  someone having more because they sacrificed and made wiser decisions is shallow, divisive, selfish and stupid… IMHO.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1642631486 Marc Hersch

      The common good is the air we breath, the seas in which we fish, the land we cultivate, the energy we produce to build and maintain our roads, cities, damns, airports and all the enterprises we undertake. It is also the well being of our fellows with whom we share all of these things and our common hopes and dreams for a better future for ourselves and our children. 

      Capitalism makes no provision for the common good. Capitalism plunders the common good in order to maximize individual wealth. It is the idea that the strongest can and should suck off the teat of the common good—our air, land, sea, our energy resources and the labor of others—to maximize individual profit. 

      Capitalism is cannibalism, plain and simple.

      • Gregg

        My grocer doesn’t give a wit if I go hungry he wants my money. It’s beautiful.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1642631486 Marc Hersch

          Your grocer has learned from you that you don’t give a wit about him, and so he returns the favor. And so it goes—dog eats dog.

          But dogs don’t generally eat each other. Canis lupus hunts in packs. Not being Capitalists, they actually do give a wit about each other. Now that’s beautiful!

          • Gregg

            Actually he’s a nice guy, he’s just got a job to do.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1642631486 Marc Hersch

            Job no. 1 for the grocer is to defend himself against cannibalistic predators who subscribe to the nonsense ideas have been advocating. 

          • Gregg

            … or get a good deal on arugula so he can make a buck.

          • Anonymous

            Making a buck is all well and good. If your grocer was going to put out of busniess by a large corporate entity such as Walmart or Stop and Shop, is that something that is good for all or the bottom line of the larger corporations.

        • Anonymous

           Unless you are a captive buyer with no other options, if your grocer doesn’t care about your needs and wants, he’s going to fail.  Of course, if he works for himself and makes his own business decisions in free market conditions, he’s an increasingly rare breed in retail.

          • Gregg

            Brilliant! That’s exactly my point.

            To Brett earlier:
            “I think most agree an honest passionate pursuit of excellence creates
            the most sustainable value, you may not. I find it’s good business.

    • Anonymous

      Nice way of avoiding the idea of the common good as it pertains to the foundation of our nation. You seem to miss the point entirely and I suggest you read some of what John Adams and Jefferson have written on this.
      It’s not your common good nor is it mine. You seem to misunderstand the very idea of this.

      If I’m wanting to set up a factory and part of the way that I’m going to maximize my profits is to pollute the river running behind my busniess is this a good thing for all?
      After all I’m employing a few hundred people in the town.
      The idea of what is good for entire town and the people downstream should come into play. In fact that’s why there are laws to prevent me from polluting the river.
      Here is an example of government using the idea of a common good that supersedes my profit margin.

    • thibaut

      Gregg je ne te connais pas mais je trouve que tu es vraiment un idiot primaire !

      • Gregg

        Thank you for your insightful comment.

        • Anonymous

          I see you’re being facetious. 

          • Modavations

            And you didn’t even need “J”

      • Modavations

        “Gregg,I don’t know you,but I find that you are a premier idiot”.That’s the translation of the Left’s immaturities in French.I think he’s using “primaire” incorrectly

    • Katottdavis

      Wow Greg, WILL FULL BLINDNESS, seems to be working for you.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Republicans have MANY pet programs and such, that has waste, fraud, and abuse!   How many of them have they cleaned up?  That would be FAR easier, and faster to do, than argue with Democrats about theirs. 
          Might provide a little credibility, to their claims?

    • ulTRAX

      Of COURSE there’s such a thing as the common good… but it’s something Right wingers such as yourself choose to be be blind to. Public health, having an educated public, clear air and water, low crime, etc etc ALL fall into that category. An argument can be made that patent laws which encourage innovation as well as monetary rewards in the market for useful innovation provide a common good.

      As for “punishing achievement” by expecting someone to PAY for the public infrastructure they use to exploit their innovations… that’s just another of your red herrings. 

      • Anonymous

        It sounds like you are calling for usage taxes to pay for government services used.  We have very few of those right now because they are not progressive but they are a good idea so people actually understand the cost of the services they receive.  
        If it did the bottom 97 percent of tax payers would pay their fair share!

        • ulTRAX

          Thanks for another regurgitation of the disingenuous Orwellian Right nonsense.

          It was BUSH who took so many working poor off the tax rolls… some 5 million… and now the Right creates resentment against complaining the working poor don’t pay enough taxes and the rich pay too much… as if they didn’t get a massive tax cut from Bush and the GOP.

      • Gregg

        I already bought infrastructure with the “stimulus” bill.

        • Anonymous

          The stimulus bill did not even scratch the surface in regards to how much work needs to be done on our roads and bridges.
          Let alone our electric grid.

        • ulTRAX

          Thanks for again proving that when faced with this infrastructure/progressive taxation argument, you evade it completely.

          • Gregg

            You’re quite welcome.

  • Anonymous

    “We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect
    union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for
    the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the
    blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and
    establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”    Preamble to the Constitution of the United States

    How does the “common good” differ from “general welfare”.

    • Gregg

      It probably doesn’t and should be promoted not provided.

      • Anonymous

        I’ll post this again:
        Government is instituted for the common good; for the protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness of the people; and not for profit,
        honor, or private interest of any one man, family, or class of men; therefore, the people alone have an incontestable, unalienable, and
        indefeasible right to institute government; and to reform, alter, or totally change the same, when their protection, safety, prosperity, and
        happiness require it.

        I think Adams meant that it should be provided.

        I give up with the disqus editing tool. It really is the worst thing out there in terms of online text usage.

        • Gregg

          I responded the first time.

          • Anonymous

            Actually you did not.  You responded but not to the idea that Adams was on about.
            It’s interesting how many people say they support the tea party and don’t even know squat about the founders.

          • Gregg

            I don’t know what to add so I repost to make sure you didn’t miss it.

            John Adams and I agree government should get out of business. Government should not profit. He does not say government is instituted to inhibit or redistribute wealth. He says government is not instituted promote it with bias towards class. That’s very different than your point… whatever it is.

          • Anonymous

            I never said anything about the redistribution of wealth or about inhibiting it. The idea of the common good as a basis of a society is what I was on about.
            Of course you don’t see that. What you see is what you want. When I’m taking about the common good it does not mean that I want to stop busniess. I’m not for stopping it, I’m for it not trumping society. For busniess not being the be all and end of of how communities are run and governed.

            I’m not into having factories polluting without a care in the world. The idea that some corporation or investment firm or hedged fund has more rights than me or my neighbors because of their wealth is absurd.
            That’s not what this country was founded on.  You think taxes are a redistribution of wealth. With that mind set I don’t even know why I’m bothering trying to explain anything to such a ideologue. You then try to insult me, which is rich coming for the guy who is always complaining about that.
            Life is to short to waste on fools.

  • Frankd

    it’s a matter of priorities

    nothing is wrong with capitalism, but a few capitalists have perverted the system and there is nothing stopping them

    our markets, stocks, bonds, real estate are all corrupt in ways that a basic trust is lost as doing a volume of transactions supercedes doing good and honest business

    if bernie madoff got out or arthur anderson was resurrected, those entities would have no lack for business because what they did and would continue to do is pervasive and endemic and lauded by many capitalists today, who will insist the only thing they did wrong was to get caught

    crime does pay

    just ask corzine

    frankD
    ftlauderdale fla

  • Frankd

    .

    as for capitalism and democracy

    well a BAD CHOICE is a bad choice no matter the theocracy or economic ideology or type of government in place

    west germany invested a TTTrillion in east germany

    the US invested the same in iraQ

    the combined germany will lead the world in solar energy in ten or twenty years in the same way they now dominate high-quality manufactured products today being sold for a premium because of their world renown craftsmenship that cannot be duplicated or outsourced

    what will iraQ produce ?

    who got the better deal ?

    frankD
    ftlauderdale fla

  • fredlinskip

    This thread having gone some cold and soon to disappear into oblivion, I hope I might be forgiven for repeating part of a short conversation buried in the 650 posts below.

    It was proclaimed that a large part of the problem with our democracy and capitalist society is a poorly formed electorate.
    When question was asked what might be done to improve this situation, the reply was that people should view many sources, the prominent sources suggested Fox news and Rush.

    My reply was:
    “Fox is run by Ailes, who was a political strategist in numerous GOP
    campaigns before Fox. Their mission statement revolves around GOP
    messaging.
        On a good day when all planets align I’m sure there
    are some good interviews now and then. As a steady diet I would think 
    whoever would watch them on a steady basis or listen to Rush, would be
    subject to brain dysfunction. Why put yourself through that?
       If you watch cartoon network regularly, you will begin to spout the philosophies of Bugs Bunny.
    Watch Fox and you’ll end up spouting the corporate philosophies of Rupert. It’s inevitable.
    I value my brain, heart, and soul far too much to put up with much of that.”

    Being a subject somewhat near and dear to me, I wonder if anyone else has any opinions on the subject.

    Thanks

    • Gregg

      My suggestion was tongue in cheek because I know your view. I can’t speak for the others. I just think one should know a wee bit about what they are criticizing. It’s very plain your opinion is not first hand.

      • Fredlinskip

        Actually, tongue in cheek or no, you did say somewhere in this comment page and in former that you considered Fox and Rush 2 of the most valuable sources out there. And your motion was seconded (at least concerning Fox) on this page by Brandstat (probably got that name wrong).

        But honestly I was hoping to hear from some others to help determine if the above point made has any legitimacy.

        Thanks though

        • Fredlinskip

          And Gregg- just FYI, I have watched your favorite channel on occasion-
          how else would you have thought I had developed such a strong opinion.

          • Gregg

            I don’t think you have and I believe you are happy to stay in your uncurious comfort zone.

          • Fredlinskip

            Now you’re calling me a liar Gregg. I must admit I’m surprised by that.
            Are you really such a devotee to your station that you’re shocked that someone could watch it and not be profoundly won over by it’s  uniquely open-minded “fair and balanced” reporting?

          • Modavations

            I hope you’re lying.Why do you think I listen to NPR.Iwant,I demand to know the otherside.You live a life of Yin,without Yang.Not only is Rush a fount of info,it’s often hysterical.I’m not yelling at you,I’m dumbfounded.Check things like “Drive a Yugo”,or Born Free”

          • Gregg

            Relax, your characterization of Fox is cliched and not close to what actually happens at Fox. You don’t have to like’um but you blame them for dumbing down the population. And you do so citing squat. There is no more vitriol spewed at Conservatives anywhere on the dial. It’s almost like you use Media Matters more than your own eyes. I’m sure you have surfed through on occasion I’m not calling you a liar but it’s clear you don’t watch as much Fox as I do MSNBC. Or listen to as much Rush as I do BBC and NPR. You don’t have a basis for your premise. You know it in your heart.

          • Fredlinskip

            I don’t doubt. you watch/ listen to more left media than I do right.
            You stated that you doubted I watched Fox on occasion right after I stated I had.
            The point of original comment was not to get in a Moda/Terry type quibble, but to see how many folks might support original comment.
            It was probably an exercise in futility, seeing as not so many different folks may visit this old thread before it disappears. It appears only 5 or 6 folks are responsible for the last 50 comments.
            I’m going to learn something from this one way or t’other.
            Later 

          • Gregg

            But there are uncounted others who read and don’t comment forevermore. It still makes no difference.

          • Anonymous

            Isn’t it quaint the way Moda calls me a liar and Gregg calls you a liar, but we ignorant, uninformed liberals are such mean spirited, closed minded brutes?

        • Modavations

          Count me in on that too.Fox has many,many Lefties.Rush is genius

          • Anonymous

            When Rush started out he was clearly tongue-in-cheek, over-the-top.  Then he realized there were fools who took his jabbering seriously and began to take himself seriously.  He’s still a joke, just a less funny one.

          • Modavations

            Just call me a fool!!!.You’ve already called me everything else

    • Anonymous

           William F. Buckley,Jr. is considered the father of modern conservatism.  He was an intellectual giant. I could listen to that man speak for hours, despite the fact that I disagreed with many of  his stances on the issues. That’s because he was brilliant, honest, and he really knew his stuff. Many years ago, I saw him interview Rush Limbaugh. It was one of the most hilarious interviews I’ve ever seen of a supposed great thinker. It was like watching the court jester, groveling at the feet of the king. Buckley could barely contain his amusement.                 There’s a reason Limbaugh only rarely has guests with opposing views. It’s the same reason he needs his “Ditto-Heads.” He’s great at pontificating with his endless monologues, all alone in his studio. He has a grand old time when Sean, or Laura, or Glen pay a visit. But a guest with opposing views and only half a brain would expose him for the intellectual fraud he is. Even that dolt O’Reily has the stones to invite strongly opposing views on his show on a regular basis.                                           And, apropos of nothing, why would anyone in the world want to be known as a “Ditto-Head?” Is that some form of code for “Please tell what I think, Rush?”    

      • Gregg

        Hilarious. This is the point I was making to Fredlinskip. One should know a wee bit about what they are criticizing. I don’t recommend you listen, your head might explode. 

        Sean, Laura and Glenn never pay a visit because Rush rarely has guest ever. They have never been on his show except in Sean’s case as substitute host a decade ago. If he had a guest it was Dick Cheney or Condi… or Buckley who was his friend. That was a good show. As to opposing views he welcomes them and the show is full of opposing thought. “Ditto” has nothing to do with agreeing with his views, that’s another thing you would know if you had a clue.

        So, Rush’s credibility aside, why would you let others form your opinions for you? You’ve never listened, which is fine but you think you are an expert which is bogus.

        • Anonymous

          Much as you’re proud not to be an expert on Mapplethorpe, I wear my disinterest in Rush Limbaugh as a badge of honor.Contrary to your claim, I listened to Limbaugh many times. That’s how I learned what a goofy gasbag he is. Finally, before my head actually did explode, I had to tear myself away.  Unlike Rush’s millions of worshipers, no one has EVER formed my opinions for me. I don’t have to listen to a bloviating fool, preaching to the choir, day after day to form my opinions. Not Lmbaugh, not Olberman, not O’Reily. Apparently Rush’s devotees need guidance from their hero, otherwise, why would anyone listen to a rehash of their own opinions day after day? And if Buckley was friends with Rush, my opinion of Buckley has just been knocked down a peg or two. I guess one shouldn’t expect perfection from his heroes.

      • Fredlinskip

        Thanks

      • Modavations

        Seriously,you’ve never listened to Rush.Why do you think he’s the most listened to guy in the world.I don’t believe you and if so,this is why I complain the Left is hardly open minded.That’s like me saying I never read the NYT.

        • Anonymous

          You’re making it very hard to stick to  our civility pact, my friend. First you attribute to me a claim I never made, then you call me a liar. I listened to Rush many times for several years in the nineties. It was a nice comedy show as I drove back from Rhode Island in my truck five days a week. Gregg will be happy to know that I can admit I got the “ditto” thing wrong, but I didn’t get it back then either. I stand corrected. But it’s precisely because I did listen to Limbaugh’s foolish gibberish that I now have the opinion of him that I do.

          • Fredlinskip

            Appreciate your input- didn’t mean to set you up in the middle of a mud-slinging contest.
            Later

          • Anonymous

            We need only consider the source. Peace.

          • Modavations

            Listen lad,if I called you a liar I appologize,but I reread the posts and am at a loss.

          • Anonymous

              What a surprise, Moda at a loss.

        • Anonymous

          On second thought, calling me a liar and implying I’m closed minded because of it is hardly civility. The fact that I didn’t even make the statement you think I made confirms all of my earlier suspicions about you.

          • Modavations

            Where,when.You need to learn to laugh son.You are definetly closed minded.Read the NYT-WSJ then decide..The Comrads in Moscow laugh at the idea of the Boston Globe.It’s an organ of the Democrats.The kiss of death for Huntsman was the endorsement of B.Globe

          • Anonymous

               And yet again, you completely miss the point of a contributors comment. I can’t even waste my time trying to explain it to someone for whom English is apparently a sixth or seventh language.

          • Anonymous

                By the way, I’m sure very few of your new friends in Moscow ever heard of the Boston Globe.

          • Modavations

            I found it and I said,I don’t believe you.I did not say you are a liar.I stand by ‘closed minded”

          • Anonymous

                “I…. Don’t…. Believe ….You.” If you say you don’t believe me, you’re calling me a liar. Think real hard and maybe you’ll get it. And calling me closed minded for magically lying about a claim I didn’t even make and sticking to that stance despite the evidence, is a textbook example of Modavations dementia. Maybe TTT is right about the mercury, after all.

        • Zero

          Rush screens the liberals.  An actual liberal caller will never get on the air.

          • Modavations

            Ed Shultz got busted paying Liberal plants to phone in.

          • Gregg

            Evidence you’ve never listened.

          • Zero

            I’ve tried tried calling after I heard a “liberal” on the show. 

    • William

      The popularity of Fox is in response to the Liberal bias of the MSM.

      • fredlinskip

        Not a big fan of MSM, but I believe Fox has been around much longer, no?

        I don’t think MSM broadcasts their propaganda 24/7 like Fox either- I think they break it up with a lot of oddball documentaryish (invented new word) type shows in between.

        • Fredlinskip

          Although I must confess, I do appreciate “Morning Joe” show now and again.

        • Gregg

          Are you confusing MSM (Main Stream Media) with MSNBC? If so,do you really believe they are as fair as Foxnews? BTW they were both launched the same year, not sure which one first. I watch a lot of MSNBC.

          • Fredlinskip

            You’re right- I was thinking MS N- I’ll have to rejigger my response to William.
            I believe the recent GOP presidential nominee debate is the first I’ve missed, but I can assure you it wasn’t because it was on “fair and balanced”.

          • Fredlinskip

            FOX launched in 86
            MSNBC launched 96
            if my albeit quick search is correct.

          • Gregg

            Fox was launched in 96 but it’s cool.

      • Anonymous

                 Someone please explain to me what this “Liberal Bias of The Mainstream Media” baloney means. I’m a liberal. My primary news sources have always been those terrible left-wing propaganda machines, NPR and The Boston Globe. Yet I’m as well informed as anyone on this forum. I know all about President Obama’s sinking numbers.  The sense of disappointment many liberals feel with Obama is well known to me, in fact, I count myself among them. I’m well aware of the dismal state of the economy. The political cowardice of Nancy Pelosi and the democratic majority for four years was not hidden from me. I knew all about Bill Clinton’s troubles for eight years. I think if I heard the words Whitewater, Lewinsky, or “healthcare debacle” many more times in the nineties I’d have blown my brains out. Jimmy Carter’s sorry presidency and the economic turmoil of those days were well reported for all to see. I just don’t get it. If the mainstream media has had such a liberal bias, how is it that they’ve done such a wonderful job keeping me informed about all the liberal, democratic angst?                       What conservatives who use the term mean is “objective journalism that informs the public but doesn’t wear some kind of conservative bias on it’s sleeve.” Apparently a conservative bias is just fine, sort of like Fox. Apparently conservative’s think  journalism means telling people what to think. If you give people the facts and leave interpretation of those facts up to individuals, by some twisted logic that’s considered “Liberal Bias.”

      • Fredlinskip

        I suppose if you’re standing all the way by the right field fence, I guess anywhere else you look would seem- well- to the left.

    • Still Here

      All for-profit entities are designed to maximize profits by providing a good or service valued by the customer.  The higher the quality and the greater the consistency of the good or service, the longer the sustainability of the provider.  

      • Anonymous

        Well you mean like fast food.
        It’s funny Germany has about a 5th of our population and they are what, the third or forth largest economy in the world. They do it by having highly skilled and educated work force with strong unions and decent health care. We on the other hand seem to be aiming for the lowest common denominator.

  • Me

    We’re now entering the day and age of Nazi-Capitalism! In my opinion!

    • Anonymous

      I think that’s a bit over blown. Plutocracy is more like it or an oligarchy. I would say we have plutocracy now, that corporations and predominantly wall street have way to much influence over our government. The Citizens United case kind of put the final nail on that.

  • Modavations

    Read the editorial page of the NYT,then the WSJ,then decide.I find night time MSNBC to be hate speech.I love Morning Joe,but will miss Pat.As I wish to be well rounded, I watch Comrad Chris,but gag quite often.Mr.Maddow is unwatchable(Lighten up all you guys who are about to pounce.I’m human).    

    • Fredlinskip

      You sure about the human thing?
      Just kidding.
      I am hoping though that before you and Gregg clog up the below conversation too much, I can get a few more others opinions on the subject. If know no one else backs my original post, then maybe I’ll have to take a step back and ponder the possibility that I’m less open-minded than I thought.

      • Modavations

        No problem,but I find you a major “clogee”.If we put all your missives together from today alone,we’d have”War and Peace”.Peace bro,just levity

  • Modavations

    Even though the StateDept.had signed off on the Pipeline repeatly and even though pipelines are already running through the same area,the Pres.has bowed to the Cult of Giai.There go 20,000 shovel ready jobs.But next week he’s gonna approach the economy “like a laser beam”.

  • Still Here

    Killing Keystone XL doesn’t seem like it’s for the common good, it certainly doesn’t help our job crisis.  Thanks Obama for letting election-year politics drive your short-term decision making.  What a failure!

    • Anonymous

      The Rep.  governor and legislature of Nebraska acted in his state’s interests, not everyone elses, (ala Gregg’s view of how things should be done) in blocking the route and until a new route is known how can it be evaluated? 

    • Anonymous

      Not that many jobs would have been created.
      Maybe about 12 thousand semi-permanent or so.
      Of course you’re not interested in the facts. 

      • Modavations

        20,000 -100,000 jobs.They studied it for 3 years and all paperwork had been signed off on a million times.The Food stamp President,The Dependency Party and the Cult of Giai have won round one

        • Anonymous

          100,000 jobs?
          Yeah I guess if you count the fast food jobs and anything else and just dump them into a false statistic you come up with that number. The real number of jobs of the people who would be working on the pipeline is about 12 thousand or so.
          Give or take.

          • Modavations

            Up to 100,00.Peterbilt makes trucks,People make wheels,UPS makes deliveries,restaurants open,hotels are developed.The Giai cult would rather save a squirrel then put the 20,000 people to work tommorrow

          • Terry Tree Tree

            MILLIONS of people live in, and adjacent to that proposed right of way!  You equate them to a squirrel?

  • Anonymous

    All of the comments center around democracy versus capitalism.  While we sit around and argue China is eating our lunch.  Capitalism worked well in the past to improve our standard of living because we had little competition for years.  If you look at the balance of payments curves things started going bad in the 60′s and 70′s when Japan was riding high and then it really went bad when China figured out how to build things with kids, little care about the environment, no labor unions with any power, etc.  Capitalist’s in a democracy can’t compete against that in their own country so the capitalist’s running companies that don’t want to go broke head for the cheapest labor and least rule’s location.  Meanwhile we sit around and argue about who is responsible for things going bad in this country and continue to buy cheap products from China.  We deserve what we will get which eventually will be collapse unless we wake up and reduce the amount of imports and kick our students into waking up and studying science.  The only significant growth we have in this country is minority groups which are growing at over 8% and statistically require a large amount of government dollars to support – that’s not a racist comment it’s a statistical one.

    • Anonymous

      I don’t know where you get your stats from but whites receive more public assistance than any other minority.
      Which stands to reason as they are a majority.

      • Modavations

        30% blacks on the dole,6% whites.

        • Anonymous

          This breaks down to:
          More African Americans do live in poverty so in terms of percentage they are receiving assistance more per capita than whites, but white people are still getting out in front of this sad statistic. Life is to short do deal with fools.

          39% white 11,661,000 of 29,900,000 recipients

          38% black 11,362,000 of 29,900,000

          17% Hispanic 5,083,000 of 29,900,000
          More info here:

          http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2010-08-30-1Asafetynet30_ST_N.htm

          • Modavations

            Your first blurb was propaganda and thus my reply.School vouchers,marriage bonus please

          • ulTRAX

             Moda just can’t resist his right wing socialism… using government’s power of taxation to 1: line corporate coffers with vouchers or 2: social engineer personal relationships by rewarding some types of relationships while punishing others. Why are you trying to punish free choice NOT to marry? And you call yourself a Libertarian? Like with all things, you’re as clueless about Libertarianism as you are about every other -ism out there.Are there any intelligent, non-hypocritical right wingers out there? Maybe, just not in this thread.

    • ulTRAX

      Wicky1 wrote: “Capitalism worked well in the past to improve our standard of living because we had little competition for years.”
      Sure there was competition… but before free trade we could impose tariffs on nations that didn’t take into account our labor costs and benefits, plus taxes like Social Security and unemployment, or anti-pollution costs. This leveled the playing field. But with free trade we foolishly put ourselves at a disadvantage… well some of us like workers had the carpet pulled out from beneath them. Investors made out like bandits because they were free to produce goods in nations without our costs, and bring them into a high profit market.
       
       

  • Anonymous

        Watch out all clear thinking people. The resident imbecile MOda has begun his rounds.

  • elevine

    In the mid 1960′s I took graduate courses at Georgetown’s foreign service school. The common academic wisdom then was that modernization would succeed in states run by secularized elites  (like Ba’ath Iraq), or motivated militaries (like Peru and Burma).

    In the late 1970′s the best selling “Foreign Affairs” re-print article was “Soft Energy Paths.”

    It’s 2012, and the same institutions are still missing the point.

    The universe is 14 billion years old; the earth is 4.5 billion years old; Pangea broke up 250 million years ago; the dinosaurs disappeared 65 million years ago; language and homo sapiens appeared around 100,000 years ago; cities developed less than 15,000 years ago; the US appeared 200 years ago; our political parties are younger than that; US slavery ended 150 years ago; the 30 years war of the 20th century ended 65 years ago.

    In 1950, world population was 2.5 billion; now it is 7 billion.

    The prosperity of the West grew on cheap externalities (natural resources from outside of depleted Europe, unrestricted pollution of air, land and water), cheap labor from kidnapped Africans and exploited nationalities (Irish, Scottish, Asian, native American), land stolen from indigenous peoples, overpowering war-making technologies and the fortuitous assistance of micro-organisms.

    Your guests managed to ignore all this and acted as if the only thing that really mattered were short-term economics and politics (4 year election cycles, 5 year development plans).

    They focused on solving our problems by “growing” us out of our economic malaise and resolving our political gridlock. You’d think there were no limits to growth, and that all politics are
     merely partisan.

    Your guests ignored the great global issues: climate change, resource depletion (energy, materials), failure of large systems (breathable air, potable water, arable land).

    We are players on a small stage; our abilities have outstripped our wisdom; our elites are rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic. 

  • ulTRAX

    Moda, are you brain damaged, stupid, or just dishonest? If it’s the former, then maybe you can be forgiven. But I suspect it’s the latter two. Either way your blather is not worth reading.

    I’ve already demonstrated back in the November Super Committe forum, that BLS numbers show  Reagan did NOT create 20 million new jobs… it was only 16 million. And his debt to GDP was NOT 3%, his last DEFICIT was 3.1%. But then, trying to show off your college education, you said you didn’t care about the difference between debt and deficit and used the terms interchangably.

    As for debt, in FY81 Reagan started with a 43.46% debt to GDP ratio and it ended in FY88 as a 65.8% debt to GDP ratio. Gee, if he always ran massive deficits, did you expect the debt NOT to go up?

    And Moda your FALSE CLAIM that Reagan doubled revenues WAS ALSO DISPROVEN, yet you’re back here making the claim again. Then you dishonestly included 3 years of revenues from Carter and Bush1. Here are those numbers AGAIN from the US Historical Budget Tables… first current dollars, the inflation adjusted dollars. These revenue figures include two massive tax HIKES during the Reagan years… but then the Right always dishonestly claims those revenues as “proof” tax cuts raise revenues.

    REAGAN REVENUES IN CURRENT DOLLARS: Table 1.1—SUMMARY OF RECEIPTS, OUTLAYS, AND SURPLUSES OR DEFICITS IN BILLIONS

    FY81 599,272

    FY88 909,238  = 65.6% increase over 8 years.

    REAGAN REVENUES IN 2005 CONSTANT DOLLARS: Table 1.3—SUMMARY OF RECEIPTS, OUTLAYS, AND SURPLUSES OR DEFICITS IN CURRENT DOLLARS, CONSTANT (FY 2005) DOLLARS

    FY81 1,251.4

    FY88 1,421.1 = 13.56% increase over 8 years. 

    Last there’s NO SUCH THING as a “picture perfect” deficit or debt.

    SOURCES: Tables 1.1 and 2.1 US Budget Historical Tables

    http://www.usgovernmentspending.com/spending_chart_1970_1999USp_13s1li111mcn_H0t

    • ulTRAX

      Here are some words from our resident Village Idiot:

      Modavations 11/28/2011 07:28 AM I use debt-deficit interchangeably

      • Terry Tree Tree

        What do you expect from a B.C. education?

    • ulTRAX

      I find it a damning indictment that Gregg… who’s claimed several times he’s only interest in “truth” gives Moda a free pass no matter what lies and distortions he writes. But then we already know Gregg isn’t interested in “truth”… only promulgating his distorted, usually ridiculous, right wing talking points.
       

  • ulTRAX

    Marc Hersch wrote elsewhere:
    Capitalism makes no provision for the common good. Capitalism plunders the common good in order to maximize individual wealth. It is the idea that the strongest can and should suck off the teat of the common good—our air, land, sea, our energy resources and the labor of others— to maximize individual profit.

    Capitalism is cannibalism, plain and simple.

    Capitalism is a dual edge sword. Incentives help drive progress and I have no problem with unequal wealth to a point… a topic for another time. 

    But the self-interest inherent in capitalism means to have a social conscience… to take care of workers, to not pollute etc, is to put one’s self at a competitive disadvantage. Conversely to AVOID these costs gives a company a perverse competitive advantage. This later amoral form of capitalism borders on sociopathy. 

    It takes government intervention to bring these costs into the market. If that’s not done, capitalism is a primitive economic system that deals only in monetary transactions while the externalities… those very REAL costs of child labor, injured workers, pollution, etc get buried.. to be paid by innocent third parties who subsidize the profit making activities of the capitalist with the degradation of their health, quality of life, and property.

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  • http://www.addvalue.com.au/ executive gifts

    It amuses me that, while the Capitalist model is open to question, the Democratic model is not. There are just as many examples of Democracies failing as there are of Capitalism failing, but questioning the inherent goodness of Democracy is taboo.

  • Pingback: Growth Crisis in Global Economy Censored Beneath US Election Fever « The Daily Crowd

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