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Posts Tagged ‘Corporatism

Turley: 10 Reasons The U.S. Is No Longer The Land Of The Free

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Ron Paul is the only Presidential candidate in recent memory to speak up for freedom and the Constitution. Below Turley lists the incredible and increasing powers of the Executive to ignore the Bill of Rights, due process and the rule of law. These Stasi-like and draconian powers will not go unused.

Meanwhile we have two political parties united in their support of Corporate domination and citizen submission. Clearly only those who bow to these powers are (usually) allowed to run.

Jonathan Turley   January 15, 2012

Below is today’s column in the Sunday Washington Post.  The column addresses how the continued rollbacks on civil liberties in the United States conflicts with the view of the country as the land of the free.  If we are going to adopt Chinese legal principles, we should at least have the integrity to adopt one Chinese proverb: “The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their right names.”  We seem as a country to be in denial as to the implications of these laws and policies.  Whether we are viewed as a free country with authoritarian inclinations or an authoritarian nation with free aspirations (or some other hybrid definition), we are clearly not what we once were.

Every year, the State Department issues reports on individual rights in other countries, monitoring the passage of restrictive laws and regulations around the world. Iran, for example, has been criticized for denying fair public trials and limiting privacy, while Russia has been taken to task for undermining due process. Other countries have been condemned for the use of secret evidence and torture.

Even as we pass judgment on countries we consider unfree, Americans remain confident that any definition of a free nation must include their own — the land of free. Yet, the laws and practices of the land should shake that confidence. In the decade since Sept. 11, 2001, this country has comprehensively reduced civil liberties in the name of an expanded security state. The most recent example of this was the National Defense Authorization Act, signed Dec. 31, which allows for the indefinite detention of citizens. At what point does the reduction of individual rights in our country change how we define ourselves?

While each new national security power Washington has embraced was controversial when enacted, they are often discussed in isolation. But they don’t operate in isolation. They form a mosaic of powers under which our country could be considered, at least in part, authoritarian. Americans often proclaim our nation as a symbol of freedom to the world while dismissing nations such as Cuba and China as categorically unfree. Yet, objectively, we may be only half right. Those countries do lack basic individual rights such as due process, placing them outside any reasonable definition of “free,” but the United States now has much more in common with such regimes than anyone may like to admit.

These countries also have constitutions that purport to guarantee freedoms and rights. But their governments have broad discretion in denying those rights and few real avenues for challenges by citizens — precisely the problem with the new laws in this country.

The list of powers acquired by the U.S. government since 9/11 puts us in rather troubling company……..read entire article

Written by laudyms

January 16, 2012 at 7:57 am

Ten Years of the Bush Tax Cuts Benefiting the Rich

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June 6, 2011  OurFuture.org   

On June 7, 2001, President George W. Bush signed into law the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act, the first of two “Bush tax cuts.” That measure reduced the top income tax rate from 39.6 percent to 35 percent, and reduced capital gains and estate taxes. In the 10 years since the first Bush tax cut went into effect:

The richest Americans received the most benefit from the Bush tax cuts.

  • $520,000: The average tax cut received by the top 0.1 percent of Americans, those making more than $3 million a year. That is over 450 times the tax cut received by an average middle-class family.
  • The middle 20 percent of wage earners (making between $40,000 and $70,000) received less than 11 percent of the total Bush -era tax cuts.
  • The bottom 20 percent (making less than $20,000) received only a 1 percent share of the Bush tax cuts; 75 percent of  these low-income families saw no tax benefit at all.
  • The average middle-class family received one-eighth of the tax breaks that a family in the top 20 percent of income earners received while the average working-class family reaped less than one-hundredth of the average tax cut received by a family in the top fifth of earnings.

Source: Economic Policy Institute

The middle class has fallen behind as wealth has been transferred to those at the very top.

  • The top one percent of the population enjoyed 65 percent of the income growth between 2002 and 2007.
  • Median household income in 2009, $49,777, was 5 percent below what it was in 2009, adjusted for inflation.
  • By contrast, the nation’s top 400 taxpayers reported an average adjusted income of $108 million in 2008, 56 percent higher in real terms than in 2009.
  • In 2000, 11.3 percent of the population was in poverty. By 2009, that percentage had increased to 14.3 percent.
  • In 2000, 33.7 percent of the population earned less than $35,000 a year (in 1999 dollars). In 2009, that percentage was up to 36 percent.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau; Internal Revenue Service, Emmanuel Saez, “Striking It Richer: The Evolution of Top Incomes in the United States”

The Bush tax cuts did not create a jobs bonanza for middle-class workers.

  • Job growth between 2000 and 2007 was the weakest in any business cycle since the 1950s; job growth was only one-third of the rate seen between 1989 and 2000.
  • One in three manufacturing jobs has been lost (from 17.3 million to 12 million) between 2000 and 2008; one in four goods-producing jobs have been lost (from 24.6 million to 18.9 million), and 900,000 construction jobs have been lost since 2001.
  • 8 million: The number of jobs lost during the recession that started in 2008.
  • Three years is the minimum time it is projected to take to gain back the jobs lost in the recession, if the economy grows at a rate of 300,000 new jobs added a month.

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Economic Policy Institute

The Bush tax cuts is at the root of today’s deficit problem.

  • The surplus in the fiscal 2001 federal budget was $127 billion. The 2010 budget had a budget deficit of $1.3 trillion. The long-term national debt more than doubled from $5.6 trillion in 2000 to  $13.6 trillion in 2010, mostly under Bush’s watch.
  • Federal tax receipts in 2010 were 14.9 percent of gross domestic product . In 2000 it was as high as 20 percent.

Source: Department of the Treasury, usgovernmentrevenue.com

Corporations have escaped paying their fair share as a result of the Bush tax cuts and other tax policies.

  • Twelve top corporations paid no taxes or actually received money from the IRS between 2008 and 2010. The list includes Boeing, Verizon, Dupont, Yahoo, IBM, Wells Fargo, American Electric Power, Exxon Mobil, FedEx, General Electric, Honeywell International, and United Technologies.
  • $62.4 billion was reaped in subsidies by these twelve companies over the three-year period, even as they paid no taxes on $171 billion in profits.

Source: Citizens for Tax Justice

We will bring the giants to their knees and you will witness our revolution!

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Quote of the Week           We Ain’t Got Time to Bleed


We Ain’t Got Time To Bleed. It’s Time for the Revolution.

“You control our world. You’ve poisoned the air we breathe, contaminated the water we drink, and copyrighted the food we eat. We fight in your wars, die for your causes, and sacrifice our freedoms to protect you. You’ve liquidated our savings, destroyed our middle class, and used our tax dollars to bailout your unending greed. We are slaves to your corporations, zombies to your airwaves, servants to your decadence. You’ve stolen our elections, assassinated our leaders, and abolished our basic rights as human beings. You own our property, shipped away our jobs, and shredded our unions. You’ve profited off of disaster, destabilized our currencies, and raised our cost of living. You’ve monopolized our freedom, stripped away our education, and have almost extinguished our flame. We are hit…we are bleeding…but we ain’t got time to bleed. We will bring the giants to their knees and you will witness our revolution! ”

-Former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura, April 12, 2011

US Midterm Election: Battle of the Billionaires (either way, you lose)

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The ballots have been cast, the polls have closed and the Republicans have retaken the House. But the 2010 Midterm Elections were the most expensive in history, and the money isn’t going anywhere. On the right, billionaire David Koch and Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation fuel the Tea Party. And on the left, General ElectricViacom gave President Barack Obama a commercial-free, hour-long town hall across its networks. And while Republicans and Democrats come and go in Congress, Wall Street’s interests are just too big to lose.

Give the Two-Party System the Third Finger!

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If nothing else, the fact that Corporate lobbyists write almost all legislation should tell you all you need to know.

Written by laudyms

November 2, 2010 at 6:57 am

Two Party Charade Threatens Liberty

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Will Liberty Continue To Have A Home In America?

I found this article above which is freely sprinkled with Christian references at another site. Even so, the author Chuck Baldwin seems more concerned about liberty than dogmatism and at another part of his site clearly distinguishes Neocons as “hiding amongst our supposedly conservative politicians.”  In the Liberty piece he writes: “I think it is safe to say that many Americans today are not only unwilling to fight for their own liberty (and I am not talking about fighting unconstitutional, unprovoked wars in the Middle East), they do not even seem to be able to discern what true liberty is.”

Extreme pro-life attitudes aside, it is very interesting that “fringe” parties agree on reasonable policies while the so-called mainstream parties conversely agree on perpetual war, corporate domination, and perks for the few.  The Dems are just the wimpy wing of the GOP.

From the Wikipedia article about him http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chuck_Baldwin :

On September 10 [2008], [Ron] Paul held a National Press Club conference at which [Constitution Party candidate] Baldwin , Green Party nominee Cynthia McKinney, and independent candidate Ralph Nader all agreed on four principles—quickly ending the Iraq war, protecting privacy and civil liberties, stopping increases in the national debt, and investigating the Federal Reserve—and on their opposition to the Democratic and Republican parties ignoring these issues.[36]

Now that corporate contributions to electioneering are unlimited and non-transparent, politics will only get more ridiculous. It’s time to forge an alliance between freedom lovers and produce a real choice instead of this tedious (and dangerous) two-party charade which offers no choice at all.

Unbridled Science for Profit Will Reap Catastrophe

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Science took a seriously wrong turn some years ago when academia/gov’t oversight defaulted and corporations triumphed.  Since then many areas of development have ignored safety concerns and proceeded full throttle in search of profits damn what may.  The chemical industry may have been  the first to go completely haywire, flooding our bodies and environment with toxics. Now we have GMO, nanotech and geoengineering all racing to see who can cause global catastrophe first.

It’s not that hard to find credible sources of concern. But it is very hard to get anyone to take them seriously. In fact we’re over the cliff rushing headlong down a precipitous slope barely keeping our feet. It’s probably too much to expect people to be considered and rational in such a condition. –Claudia

An evil atmosphere is forming around geoengineering

…a powerful group of scientists, venture capitalists and conservative think tanks is coalescing around the idea of reproducing this cooling effect by injecting sulphur dioxide into the stratosphere to counter climate change. Despite the enormity of what is being proposed – nothing less than seizing control of the climate – the public has been almost entirely excluded from the planning.

Chemtrails

video- you believe your own eyes don’t you?

New study shows possibilities and dangers of nanotechnology

Researchers at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico found that exposure to a certain type of fullerene known as the “tris” configuration, referring to a certain configuration of molecular branches on the nanoparticle, produced a toxic reaction in human tissue. Iyer said that cells from skin and lungs were among those studied, since those would be likely points of exposure to nanoparticles. Cells exposed to the tris fullerenes went into a state that could be described as suspended animation, she said. Cells’ normal life cycle halted, meaning that they stopped growing, dividing and dying.

US Consumers Have Been Given a False Sense of Security About the Safety of Our Food Supply

Many consumers in the US mistakenly believe that the FDA approves GM foods through rigorous, in-depth, long-term studies. In reality, the agency has absolutely no safety testing requirements. Instead the agency relies on research from companies like Monsanto, research that is meticulously designed to avoid finding problems.

It’s easy to understand the FDA’s industry-friendly policy on regulation of GMOs when you see the revolving door between agency regulators and the companies they regulate. The White House mandate to the FDA (under the first George Bush) was to promote biotechnology and the person in charge of developing the agency’s policy at that time was a former Monsanto attorney, who later returned to Monsanto as their vice president.