Time for a bit of comic relief. (video below the fold) Julianna reporting on Net Neutrality. Remember when President Obama said the days of lobbyists setting the agenda was over?
I’m posting this here because this is about “markets”. It is about competition. It is about freedom. The free market competition of…wait for it…IDEAS. It is not corporations or products that compete they only represent the materialization of what truly is protected in this nation, of what is the singularity within the US Constitution: IDEAS. Everything, outside of nature its self is derived from ideas. I was taught this about economics in high school in the early 70′s. Was I taught incorrectly?
Here’s the thing about ideas competing. The business model is not the end all and be all for the means by which to determine their value, as some have worked so hard to have society and the world believe. That an idea can not be immediately or expediently monetized is not determinate of its worth to life and the reduction of the risks of living.
As we continue this fight regarding the national budget, funding for the people, (food, unemployment, medical), entitlements and the overall moral position this nation has and will take with its money, let’s recall the truth about a program that was sold and is still sold as a benefit for the people. It’s cost is intentionally excluded from the overall budget discussions and thus remains hidden as to the extent of the benefit and beneficiaries.
The Medicare Prescription Drug law. Billy Tauzin (former congressman and former president/CEO of PHRMA, Dem from ’72 to ’95, republican there after):
it’s been good for the patients whom the drug industry represents
Dan Burton and Walter Jones, republicans were against it, for to them it was a “sellout” to the drug companies.
No offsets were needed. The 15 minute vote was held open for 3 hours and was in the middle of the night because it was going to be defeated. The longest roll call in the history of the house. Threats to those who did not want to vote for such a huge wet kiss to the industry were of the Tea Party type. They would run a person against you. The Medicare boss, Tom Scully Bush’s “lead” negotiator went to lobbying for the drug industry “10 days after the president signed the legislation”. He was negotiating for his lobby job during the bill negotiations.
HENRY GIROUX: Oh, I mean, I think that’s the biggest lie of all actually. The biggest lie of all is that capitalism is democracy. We have no way of understanding democracy outside of the market, just as we have no understanding of how to understand freedom outside of market values.
I learned about two maps that show the connection of corporations. I found copies of them at Occupy Educated. The first one “Corporate Connections” was created in 2003. You can read about it here.
The second one is a condensed update looking at just 10 corporations and the brands which they control.
These two maps make me think of all sorts of things. Like, do we have choice in the market place? Do we have choice in the market place of ideas? Choice of ideas are professed to be necessary for a healthy capitalistic system. It is ideas that compete not products as they only represent an idea.
I noted the following: but it looks to me like what we spend on welfare is not much more than what the government is spending on just doing the government thingy, unless of course people can’t get a job. Interestingly enough, the share of GDP spent on welfare in 1992 and 2010 is the same. In fact, at the peak of unemployment of the 2001 recession which was 2003, we spent just 0.0098 on welfare.
Understand that 0.0098 is the fraction of our GDP spent on welfare. That is 0.98% of our GDP. I did not include the medicaid/healthcare expenditures.
Of course there was the often heard comment to this article about welfare recipients not contributing. No skin in the game, not contributing, blah, blah, blah….stuff for free. My first response and really the only needed response is “So what?” I mean really Sooooooooo What! Is the welfare person really stopping you from getting your Mercedes?
“Nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of enrollments in America’s major public benefits programs are from working families. But many of them work in jobs that pay wages so low that their paychecks do not generate enough income to provide for life’s basic necessities.”
On October 2, 2013 Chris Hayes had on Larry Kudlow to discuss the economics of the government shut down. All I can say is, I could not believe he was the one Chris went to for insight. Maybe he had to because, you know, Kudlow is related to him via the network they work at. But really, Chris could you not get your bosses to understand how someone like Kudlow professing on your show does harm to your identity and thus the relationship you have with your viewers?
Let me be clear, my impression of you and your show is that you strive to deal in facts. I have seen you have people of the conservative ideology on, but they have seemed to be people who use facts interpreted via their ideology. That’s a conversation. But Kudlow promoting “supply side”? I mean is anyone in the real world even using this phrase anymore?
My hope with this post is that our good readers will post corrections to Kudlow and note why your guest is completely full of crap thus giving you a little help and cover as I’m going with the idea that your boss made you do it. But more importantly, your viewers deserve not having to have this crap pushed at them. I have found people know the Kudlow view of the economy is baloney, but the don’t know why it is baloney and you having him on only makes their angst worse.
Let me get to it: Do you really believe your viewers bought this nonsense? Do you believe your viewers do not know it is nonsense?
In the end, you confirm you are with him… regarding the need for the economy to grow. But, I think most people will only hear that you are with him. Not good. Not good for you, not good for this nation.
So, please contact us here at Angry Bear. Anyone of us are more than capable of explaining the mess this economy is in and why the Kudlow’s of the world no longer have any credibility.
Oh, to you MSNBC what the hell is the matter with you? Is Kudlow loosing his audience so you figure putting him on with Chris will boost his cred?
Having heard Senator Sander’s discussion on the floor, I thought the outing of the republican vision for this nation in total should be preserved on the net in writing. People hear bits and piece but never put the entire picture together. Maybe reading the list will help people picture the finished house the conservative mind is working overtime to build.
It’s like the HGTV show Property Brothers. I am always amazed at the inability of the people to see the potential results when they are shown a property that has the foundation needed to realize their desire of what a home should have and be. The new home owners have presented a list of wants. They are unable to see how their wants fit with the properties shown. Then the brothers show them the CAD visuals and the people get it. Yet even during the building out of the project, the new owners struggle with accepting the completion will be what they envisioned and saw in the plans.
We’ll, here is the version of what the conservatives (not just republicans, but the libertarians and New Democrats) have in their minds for an ideal America. As you read it, keep in mind what you would like to see in the house, what you would like to have it feel like :
1. An orderly transition to individual private retirement accounts and the elimination of Social Security.
2. Privatization of Veterans health care.
3. Abolish all federal agencies who’s activities are not enumerated in the constitution including the department of education and the department of energy.
4. Oppose mandatory kindergarten
5. Abolish the EPA
6. Abolish the 16th amendment and thus get rid of the IRS to be replaced with a national, state collected sales tax.
7. Abolish the capital gains tax and estate tax.
8. Repeal the minimum wage.
If you are struggling with what this list means regarding the way your house will look, the way your house will flow as you walk in it you best start talking to people who might be able to help you imagine it. You might want to ask these planners/builders exactly what the results will be and do not let them speak in generalities.
If this plan is not what you are envisioning, then you best inform the designers and builders. There will not be a CAD plan presented so that you can have an idea of what this list results in, there will only be the reality of the list as the door is opened to this new home.
To help you imagine the experience of living in a home based on the above list of requirements I present Bill Moyers essay of 9/27/2013: Joblessness is killing us
A question has been nagging me. First, does the rest of the world not get that the republicans are playing a game with the US’ bank account? Does anyone really believe that the US won’t pay as in the renter just skipped out the back door? Or maybe I should say; as in the capital venture company just loaded up the latest purchase with debt, pocketed that money and filed bankruptcy?
Really, the US won’t pay it’s bills? Oh no, the nation is going Detroit?
It’s a game folks. Don’t play it. If you don’t play it then the republicans have no threat because the financial world is not really threatened.
Before this last recession, readers of a long time here might recall that I used my flower shop as a barometer for the economy. I noted that things were not doing well as our sales had started to decline in August of 2006. The smart boys and girls called it December 2008 as starting December 2007.
Well, today it seems some people are getting concerned. I guess Macy’s did not do so well either. And these smart ones are holding their breath for tomorrow’s Target numbers.
The analysis? It’s either the retailers have lost their way but, as noted not likely or the consumer is getting smart and not over spending or and this one just kills me: “The economy is in collapse. That’s what’s going on.”
Really? The economy is in collapse?
Disregard the government data. Jobs and GDP and all the rest are at best inaccurate measures of the economy and at worst flat out corrupt. Walmart is capitalism writ large. .. When Walmart misses estimates, it can only mean one of two things: either Walmart or the American economy is weaker than anyone thought.
Yup, that’s what it is the corrupt government numbers are not to be trusted. Walmart et al are sucking big air right now and that means the economy is going down. I mean, it certainly couldn’t be the consumer having wised up and got the message of stagnate or declining wages while working whacked out hours and accomplishing little other than having stopped the dehydration.
I got news for these “smart ones”. The flower shop says things are holding their own. It’s not growing, but it’s looking like the first year since 2006 that we will stay even and maybe even up a bit.
“I don’t think we’re in a recession right now, but I think there’s a 50 percent chance we’ll be in one next year,” Davidowitz shouts, and there’s nothing the government is going to be able to do about it. “We’ve spent all the money, we’ve borrowed all the money, and we’re in the tank.”
Who do you believe? My flower shop and Spencer’s job analysis with Ed’s explanations or Walmart and the “smart ones”?
WASHINGTON—A blank piece of legislation that says nothing, does nothing, and contains no text whatsoever has been the source of heated debate in Washington this week, and has sharply divided Congress along partisan lines, Beltway sources confirmed Thursday.
Known as S.0000, the bill, which doesn’t have sponsors, co-sponsors, or an author, has reportedly drawn starkly contrasting opinions from legislators in both the Senate and House of Representatives, and has paved the way for a major legislative battle in coming months.
“At a time when millions of Americans are still struggling, we simply cannot afford this kind of devil-may-care federal policy,” said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), angrily waving the blank stack of papers in front of reporters. “We will not risk leading the American people into further hardship simply so the Obama administration can once again do whatever they please, regardless of the consequences. As it is now, the bill is both short-sighted and utterly irresponsible.”
“Frankly, we need to get back to the negotiating table and make some major changes before members of my party would even consider putting this up for a vote,” McConnell continued. “And if my friends on the other side of the aisle try push it through, well, they’ll pay the consequences at the ballot box.”..
Let me just say, I’m no lawyer and what follows is not legal scholarship.
Of all the reading and listening I have done regarding the spying by our government via electronic data collection and storage, I have found nothing that specifically gets at the issue for me as to why it’s not a good thing. This is mostly because the common response to defending such activity by our government falls into a couple of very broad moral concepts that are part of our cultural upbringing. One is trust in the source of your protection. The other is self acknowledgment as being a morally conscious person.
Trust in the source of your protection is simply an aspect of experiencing parenting that is then extended to relationships external to the parent relationship as we mature. The other, self acknowledgment as being morally conscious is culturally learned.
Thus we get “trust the government with protecting us” such that the data collection is not a problem and “don’t worry if you are not doing anything wrong” as simple answers to why this entire NSA issues is a none issue. These answers have settled nothing.
Lack of trust creates all sorts of problems individually and for society. I’m not going to go there in this post. I’m not going to go there because it seems this nation does not respond anymore to lists of harms and dangers and thus make corrective policy to preserve our sanity. Just consider that we are continuing to pollute ourselves into extinction. Or consider that there has been very little mentioned of the new directive that turns all government employees into untrusted co-workers as a means to stop the government secretes from becoming known. Do we really think that the motivation for turning someone in will always be altruistic and not be for other selfish motives? Here is a tip, racism is not dead, selfishness has become the dominate personality of a large swath of US citizens and greed is simply one expression of selfishness. Oh yeah, we’re the government so why can I not know?
The trust your government issue has been discussed mostly by noting that one’s representative of their own ideology will not be in power at all times. It is the idea that you can not trust your source of protection if it is not of you. This is quite the conundrum for all the ideological identities to resolve such that all can trust their source of protection, in this instance: government. That source being the same for all ideological parties which have been taught to trust this source.
For me the real issue and concern is found in the morally conscious person argument. It is the argument that suggest you have nothing to fear if you are doing nothing wrong.