Third Party & Independents Archives

Our Evolving Constitution Is Being Fast Tracked

I often blog that we have too much democracy and that the evolution of the Constitution is being ‘fast tracked’. Driving both are Fortune 500’s and the Progressive movements around the world. As to the most egregious Supreme Court rulings, I would first point to Corporate Personhood law in the 1890’s, and second, Money Is Free Speech Law in the 1990’s. In a timely article in today’s Wash. Post, George Will writes about the misrepresentation of the 14th amendment as it relates to birthright by citizenship. While a hot topic of debate, birthright citizenship has not been put before the courts. Now would seem to be a good time to see which way the courts will evolve our Constitution on this issue.

George writes that “a simple reform' would bring “the interpretation of the 14th amendment into conformity with what the authors of its text intended.” The 14th amendment states that “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United states and of the state wherein they reside.” Straight forward to the most lay person, namely me, among us but, wait until the technocrats around the Supreme Court have a shot at it. Birthright citizenship is one of the more contentious Constitutional issues with vocal proponents for and against.

Another example of our ‘fast tracked’ Constitution is that of dual citizenship wherein, the oath taken by those applying for naturalization clearly states that they swear to reject all previous citizenships. Say, I didn’t get in on the debate for that one either. I’d like to have two or three passports myself, as it might save me some airport fees, etc.

When George Bush is quoted saying that the Constitution is ‘just a piece of paper’ you have to wonder what other leaders of our ‘evolving’ democracy think. And, there’s this thing of well, that’s the way we’ve done it for a coupla hundred years.

But, because of pending immigration hearings the SC may very well be forced to hear ‘birthright citizenship’.
The Post article relates that the authors and ratifiers would not have intended birthright citizenship for illegal immigrants. That, based on the fact that in 1868 there had never been any illegal immigrants because no law had ever restricted immigration. The Civil Rights Act of 1866 begins with language derived from the 14th amendment citizenship clause: "All persons born in the US, and not subject to any foreign power, excluding Indians not taxed, are hereby declared to be citizens of the US.” This divided allegiance applies to exclude the children of resident aliens, legal as well as illegal, from birthright citizenship. Regulations by Homeland Security and Justice state that children of a foreign diplomat, who were born in the US are not citizens by birthright. Sen. Lyman Trumbull, one of two principle authors of the 14th said that “subject to the jurisdiction of the US” meant not having allegiance to anybody else.” Thus, Indian children whose parents had tribal allegiances were excluded from birthright citizenship.

The article relates that congress has heard testimony that more than two-thirds of all births in Los Angeles public hospitals, and more than half of all births in that city, and nearly 10 percent of all births in the nations in recent years, have been to mothers who are here illegally. According to the Constitution and in light of the immigration hearings soon to take place one would think Congress would want to end birthright citizenship for those who are here illegally. But, when the ACLU, the Chamber of Commerce and the Corpocracy weigh in black can become white, money can become speech, Corporations can sprout limbs, the human type and we may again start postulating what the meaning of ‘is’ is.

Posted by Roy Ellis at March 29, 2010 10:50 AM
Comments
Comment #298147

Roy you state “Driving both are Fortune 500’s and the Progressive movements around the world.”
Yet you use “I would first point to Corporate Personhood law in the 1890’s, and second, Money Is Free Speech Law in the 1990’s.” as examples of this fast tracking of the constitution. Can you explain why it is you believe progressives favor either of these interpretations by the SCOTUS?

BTW the quote by Bush has been withdrawn by Capitol hill blues as they could not confirm the accuracy of the claim. They were the ones to originate the claim I believe.

Posted by: j2t2 at March 29, 2010 12:51 PM
Comment #298151

Or, we may again postulating what the meaning of ‘US’ is. Double meaning intentional.

Posted by: David R. Remer at March 29, 2010 2:21 PM
Comment #298155

j2t2, I found nothing to substantiate or deny the Bush quote. My intent was to infer that the two more egregious rulings by the SC were CP and MIFS, not that they were fast tracked. As for ‘fast tracking’ by Progressives I was thinking of the HC bill and pending immigration bill. I plead guilty to using too few words to get my points across. I see the effort to mandate HC and grant amnesty and expand government as fast tracking the evolution of our democracy and our Constitution.

Posted by: Roy Ellis at March 29, 2010 3:15 PM
Comment #298157

“As for ‘fast tracking’ by Progressives I was thinking of the HC bill and pending immigration bill.”

Roy, HRC was tried in 1993, and has been in Congress much of last year to end up with the repub alternate to the Clinton HRC of ‘93. Why would you think the HC bill was fast tracked? The patriot act made it through Congress in what 3 days from inception to completion why not add the conservatives in the fast track group?

Posted by: j2t2 at March 29, 2010 3:39 PM
Comment #298159


Roy, liberals would like us all to believe that corpocracy is progressive. This is why they claim that NAFTA and the Chinese trade deals have been very good for this country despite all the contradictory evidence. This is why the liberals deregulated the financial sector. This is why they claim that illegal immigrants are a good thing. This is why they agreed to almost every piece of legislation the Republicans pushed through Congress.

This is also why the Democrats have given us a corpocracy health care bill. This is why they are going to give us a corpocracy favored regulation bill and a comprehensive immigration bill. And, this is why the Democrats will do nothing about corporate citizenship and the recent SC decision.

It isn’t progressive, and no matter how much they want to portray it as such, it is regressive.

With the help of corporate dollars, the Democrats have morphed into the Moderate Republican Party. It was a pragmatic decision.

Posted by: jlw at March 29, 2010 4:36 PM
Comment #298161

jlw’s comment is leaping tall buildings in a single bound with revisionist history.

The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act stands for 3 Republicans who sponsored that deregulation bill. And a year later or two later, Republicans were taking control of the government and deregulating like there was no tomorrow, and turning a blind eye to enforcement in attempt to make the whole world blind. Greenspan, a Republican, refused to exercise powers of oversight and accountability to promote his Bush II president’s “Ownership Society” agenda which directly abetted the mortgage industry meltdown.

Laughable! Not much difference between spin and lying in this kind of commentary. Though, I will grant, many of those non-progressive Democrats were on board the de-regulatory measures as well, not to mention Clinton signing the GLB Act.

This is why Independent voters are taking control of elections. Enjoy!

Posted by: David R. Remer at March 29, 2010 5:54 PM
Comment #298162

Oh, did I forget to mention the trillion or so tax dollars wasted and fraudulently expended on corporations like KBR, Haliburton, and BlackWater, Inc. No wonder Cheney walks around like he owns America, and Bush II rarely shows his face.

Posted by: David R. Remer at March 29, 2010 5:56 PM
Comment #298164

jlw, IMO the Pregressive, left and right, is morphing into the new Socialist or rather the Corpocratic-Socialist. As you infer, there is little to discriminate between the two major parties. Guns and abortion, that’s about it. Otherwise, it’s the best government money can buy. The oil patch versus the banks and pharmas.

Say, what about birthright citizenship? Should that be put to the Supreme Court before or after the immigration hearings?

Posted by: Roy Ellis at March 29, 2010 6:03 PM
Comment #298171

“Roy, liberals would like us all to believe that corpocracy is progressive.”

jlw are you suggesting Roy is a liberal in thought and action?

“IMO the Pregressive, left and right, is morphing into the new Socialist or rather the Corpocratic-Socialist.”

Roy you are losing me, I found many progressives in Congress none were from the repub party and none seemed to be on the right.
From the Congressional progressive caucus
website via wiki, “the CPC advocates “universal access to affordable, high quality healthcare”, fair trade agreements, living wage laws, the right of all workers to organize into labor unions and engage in collective bargaining, the abolition of significant portions of the USA PATRIOT Act, the legalization of same-sex marriage, strict campaign finance reform laws, a complete pullout from the war in Iraq, a crackdown on corporate welfare and influence, an increase in income tax rates on the wealthy, tax cuts for the poor, and an increase in welfare spending by the federal government.”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Congressional_Progressive_Caucus

Now to me Roy that doesn’t sound corporatist and Lord knows where you are coming up with right wing progressives. If you are going to make these wild eyed accusations in your writings then please name some names, give us some facts or stop with the Glenn Beck misinformation campaign.

Posted by: j2t2 at March 29, 2010 8:20 PM
Comment #298176

It’s not that complicated.
Government is FOR-SALE, and some of the wealthy control government for the most part, as evidenced by a mere 0.3% of all 200 million eligible voters who make 83% of all federal campaign donations.

As for those defending either political party, and wallowing in the circular, divisive, partisan warfare, it’s a complete waste of time.

Obviously, some people don’t like to hear anyone trashin’ their beloved Democrats or Repubicans, despite the fact that most (if not all) incumbent politicians in BOTH political parties are FOR-SALE, incompetent, and corrupt, as evidenced by this nation’s many problems growing steadily in number and severity as the majority of Americans are either oblivious to it, or prefer to wallow in the circular, partisan warfare.

At any rate, we have the the government we elect, and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect, … , and re-elect, at least until wallowing in the circular partisan warfare, repeatedly rewarding failure, and repeatedly rewarding incumbent politicians with 85%-to-90% re-election rates finally becomes too painful.

Posted by: Scott at March 29, 2010 9:27 PM
Comment #298177

jlw, Don’t let them bully you.
You obviously hit a nerve.
You’re not that far off the mark.

The fact is, most (if not all) incumbent politicians in BOTH parties are crap.
But then, they enjoy 85%-to-90% re-election rates.
So, what’s that say about the voters?

So, there is really no big difference between Democrat and Republican Incumbent Politicians.

Unfortunately, the only major difference between the IN-PARTY and OUT-PARTY are the two destructive and disgusting extremes that each go to:

  • Extreme #1: One extreme wants regressive taxation, unfettered capitalism, little (if any) government regulations, and freedom to explore and wallow in every manifestation of unchecked greed.

  • Extreme #2: The other extreme wants a nanny-state with citizens increasingly dependent on the government; with massive cradle-to-grave government programs (which are usually severely mismanaged) that nurture a sense of entitlement and dependency on government; wants to grow government ever larger (despite the already current nightmare proportions); rewards failure and laziness; and perpetuates the myth that we can somehow all live at the expense of everyone else.

At any rate, we have the the government we elect, and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect, … , and re-elect, at least until wallowing in the circular partisan warfare, repeatedly rewarding failure, and repeatedly rewarding incumbent politicians with 85%-to-90% re-election rates finally becomes too painful.

Posted by: Scott at March 29, 2010 9:33 PM
Comment #298184

J2t2, McCain comes to mind.
http://www.thenextright.com/category/blog-tags/progressive-republicans
And, Megan McCain
http://americanpowerblog.blogspot.com/2009/03/progressive-republicans.html
And, Linsday Grahm, teaming with Chuck Schumer on Bio ID cards and immigration.
I’ve watched Beck for a while and found him credible thus far. He takes a long view of Progressive actions that irks many folks. But, he has a large and loyal audience.

Scott, agree fully with you posts. IMO, the Progressives, right and left, are working in a complicit if not coordinated manneer to move us to a european style socialist government. In doing so they are trshing our national sovereignty and our Constitution.

Now, what about this birthright citizenship and the Supreme Court?

Posted by: Roy Ellis at March 29, 2010 10:29 PM
Comment #298190

Welcome back, “scott”

Posted by: gergle at March 29, 2010 11:04 PM
Comment #298193
Now, what about this birthright citizenship and the Supreme Court?
One state has (and perhaps others have) submitted bills to change the automatic citizenship for children of illegal aliens.

That, and prosecuting greedy illegal employers of illegal aliens would greatly reduce illegal immigration.

Unfortunately, Republicans want cheap labor, and Democrats want votes and cheap labor.

And the majority of Americans say they don’t like it, but continue to reward FOR-SALE, incompetent, adn corrupt incumbent politicians with 85%-to-90% re-election rates who are swimming in pools of money thrown at them from all directions.

70% of the mothers of all babies born at Dallas’ Parkland Hospital are illegal aliens (source: www.snopes.com/politics/immigration/parkland.asp).

Illegal aliens are going to game the hell out of the new health care system (perhaps more so than ever before), or they’ll all get amnesty, and we may see a flood of tens of millions of illegal aliens so they can get in on the freebies too.

At any rate, we have the the government we elect, and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect, … , and re-elect, at least until wallowing in the circular partisan warfare, repeatedly rewarding failure, and repeatedly rewarding incumbent politicians with 85%-to-90% re-election rates finally becomes too painful.

Posted by: Scott at March 29, 2010 11:44 PM
Comment #298195

As for the Supreme Court, we need TERM LIMITS for them too.

The problem is, no such simple, common-sense, no-brainer measures are likely to come about any time soon (especially with such high re-election rates), because all branches of the government are violating various parts of the constitution.

The real villains are the greedy employers and politicians who despicably pit American citizens and illegal aliens against each other for votes and profits from cheap labor.

It’s just a matter of time before enough Americans get their fill from the incumbent politicians in BOTH parties, and start voting them out of office.

Until then, we have the the government we elect, and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect, … , and re-elect, at least until wallowing in the circular partisan warfare, repeatedly rewarding failure, and repeatedly rewarding incumbent politicians with 85%-to-90% re-election rates finally becomes too painful.

Posted by: Scott at March 30, 2010 12:26 AM
Comment #298196


David, you rebutted my comments without rebutting anything.

You bring up GLB. What history will say about GLB is that it was written primarily by financial lawyers. It was introduced to Congress by three Republican politicians. It was passed overwhelmingly by both houses of Congress with a majority of both political parties voting in favor of it. It was signed, almost as a afterthought by a Democrat president.

You mention Greenspan without mentioning that during the Clinton Administration he worked with a team which also included Geithner, Summers and Rubin among other Democrats. After Bush was elected, Greenspan worked with a similar team made up of Republicans and including one of Bush’s chief financial architects Ben Bernanke. Not one but, both political parties backed these people and every one’s excuse after it all came tumbling down was, HOW COULD ANYONE HAVE KNOWN.

David, You can dispute what I have written but, before you do, I suggest you watch the several excellent episodes of FRONTLINE where they expose these people and the rolls they played.

Just because I have concentrated on Democrats here, I am in no way implying that Republicans are any less guilty in what happened. They are probably more guilty than the Democrats because they promoted this kind of behavior and when they took over, they continued to ignore the problem until it could be ignored any longer.

J2t2, I am under no illusion that Roy is a progressive. I think that many liberals have the illusion that the Democratic Party is still a progressive party.

Obama was elected by a large coalition, many of whom were progressives. They thought that they were voting for a change, not in party but, in government. What they got was a White House with many Wall Street Democrats working with Wall Street Democrats in Congress.

Wall Street Democrats have been working well with Wall Street Republicans on financial reform and consumer protection. If it weren’t for progressive agitation, they and the White House would already have an agreement.

Wall Street Democrats are working well with Wall Street Republicans on immigration reform. Unfortunate, there is no progressive agitation on this issue. IMO, it is because progressives think that they have a good chance of turning them and their descendants into progressives rather than liberals.

Twenty million illegal immigrants plus twenty years equals possibly as many as one hundred million citizens.

Scott, Thanks for the good word.

On the Nanny State, corporations are a major recipient of the Nanny State. I turned 60 a couple of weeks ago and for me, the Military Industrial Complex will be a cradle to grave entitlement program that has cost us at least twice what was needed to defend us. As we have seen, the military does not protect our borders from invasion. Rather, it has been morphed into a world army who’s primary mission is to gain and secure corporate assets.

Welfare is a liberal policy. Full employment would be the progressive alternative.

Workers don’t want welfare. They want jobs and they want to be paid in a way that truly recognizes their contribution to our society and nation. Without them, no one else would have a job. There would be no highways, no bridges, no buildings, no consumer mass market and no servants to answer the bell. Instead, they are treated like numbers, insignificant, a dime a dozen.

Posted by: jlw at March 30, 2010 2:07 AM
Comment #298197

roy

“Say, what about birthright citizenship? Should that be put to the Supreme Court before or after the immigration hearings?”

before without a doubt.

Posted by: dbs at March 30, 2010 5:25 AM
Comment #298199

Roy and all
” want to end birthright citizenship for those who are here illegally. “

Those who are born in the US are NOT here illegaly.They are US citizen just as much as you are. Exactly what did you do to become an American citizen?

Posted by: bills at March 30, 2010 5:47 AM
Comment #298200

Scott
Just how are undocuemented people going to game the new HCR law? The subsidies will be given as tax credits. One must have a taxpayer ID number tp file taxes. If gaming the system happens at all, there is no reason to think it will be widespread that I can see. I suppose they could use sombody eleses insurance, but they can do that now.

Posted by: bills at March 30, 2010 6:04 AM
Comment #298202

Just a tiny bit off thread, but for those who insist that our new HC law is against the Constitution, please link to this:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marine_Hospital_Service

Then remember that until 1937 the Merchant Marine was not associated with government service, but was rather a totally civilian operation. How can the government demand that civilians purchase health insurance? Because John Adams signed it into law in 1798, that’s how. It has 212 years of precedence. Does someone think our founders ware all against social services?..Pooh!

Posted by: Marysdude at March 30, 2010 7:16 AM
Comment #298206

jlw, what you say is true. What I rebut is your original comment’s decided lean against Democrats, when, as you say, there were many contributors from all sides derelict in their duties to prevent the Great Recession, which was entirely foreseeable and anticipated and written about by the likes of me and others years before the collapse. And I don’t have a degree in economics.

The Bush administration however played a key role in conjunction with the Fed via the Ownership Society agenda which turned a deliberate blind eye to the kind of mortgage financing that was entirely unsound and unsustainable for the marketplace.

But, you know, Republicans to this day admit no fault, to a man, with one exception, that I am aware of, Hank Paulson. On the other hand, Geithner, Bernanke, Dodd, and a host of other Democrats have red-faced admitted to having not done enough and acted on the right information to, at the very least mitigate the downturn that became inevitable and obvious to occur by at most, 2006 and very possibly in late 2005.

Not that there is much credit to having admitted one’s errors that cost so many Americans so very much. But, to not admit culpability as in the case of Bush II and Greenspan, chief architects of the green light to sell homes to people who obviously could not afford them, takes a special kind of insular thinking and psychological disposition still evident up and down the ranks of Republicans.

Democrats are amending a great deal of the causes. Republicans have fought nearly all Democratic initiatives in this regard. That says a lot to voters who stay up on such things. Whatever hopes Republicans had for a majority position in Congress are now gone with their defeat over the Health Care reform. Voters subscribing to the lesser of two evil voting strategy will in a majority favor Democrats this fall.

Recent polling now shows Democrats as energized to vote in Nov. as Republican voters. That is a dramatic development in shifting public opinion.

Posted by: David R. Remer at March 30, 2010 8:28 AM
Comment #298210

DR
BHO picked up a bump after the HCR bill finally passed.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/03/29/obama-gets-post-health-ca_n_517681.html

The Republican Recession’s causes and its severity are more complicated than you mentioned,the bundling and re-selling mortage securities by banks with no skin in the game , weakening rules on home equity loans,etc. What a mess. Things were allowed to go terribly wrong when a bad home loan in Baldwin Park leads to the bankruptcy of Iceland.

Dude
Love it. Nice piece of research. Of course facts just infuriate wingnuts but maybe this will help cut out the “Founders” bs some.

Posted by: bills at March 30, 2010 10:50 AM
Comment #298211

Roy, I’m disappointed in you. I used to read your posts and comments very closely. You always made a lot of sense. “We have the government we deserve.” and all that. You’ve opened my eyes to how difficult it can be to start a new third party. Just like DR and some of the other WB people I looked up to you for a perspective on the news. But here of late you seem to be off in right field. I think it’s the Glen Beck influence. Listen to me Roy, Glen is an entertainer just like Rachel, Oberman and Jon Steward. Unlike Jon he has an agenda. I’ve watched Glen. He’s very good at delivering a line. It’s his writers I have a take exception to. It reminds me of one of my great disappointments in life. I always looked forward to Paul Harvey, till one day in Bill Clinton’s first term when he said “ This is from the mail bag. Flash, the only reason Clinton’s in Northern Ireland is to get away from White Water.” This was a full year after White Water was declared to have nothing to it. And Bill was trying to bring peace to a region that had been fighting for centuries. The only reason Harvey said this was because he had a political agenda.

jlw, There is a difference between Democrats and Republicans. Democrats will tell you what you want to hear and then do what special interests want, while Republicans will tell you what they want you to think and then do what special interests want. It stated off with “trickle down” which George the elder called “voodoo economics”. You give rich people all the money and there’ll be lots of jobs. You see how well that worked out. But here in the last few years their rhetoric has gotten ridiculous. Thanks to the Glen Becks in their fox induced world. Listen to me Roy. There is no such thing as a right wing progressive. And to lump the ACLU in with the Chamber of Commerce and the Corpocracy doesn’t make any sense. There are no progressives shoving socialism down your throat. I know I am a progressive. (I wrote Claire McCasskill every day for three weeks trying to get her to sign on to the public option with 40 some Senators. With in half an hour of Nancy Pelosi stating there would be no public option in the reconciliation bill, McCasskill was telling Huffington Post she was in favor of the public option.) And the public option is not very progressive. It would bring competition to a broken market place.

The health care bill isn’t a government take over of the health care system. It’s a corporate friendly bill strait from the Heritage Foundation. The government isn’t the problem, it’s a necessary evil. I don’t look to the government for a hand out like most of the big corporations. I look to the government to protect me from an ever increasingly manipulated market place. If your car insurance or home owner’s insurance rose their premiums 40%, you would simply go to their competition. But like energy and so many other sectors of our economy, the health care market is manipulated by a tiny number of players, who’s only concern is to increase their profit. We need the government to do it’s job. I also depend on the government for product safety. Yesterday I realized the apple juice I was drinking was made in China. No one has a clue to what’s in that apple juice. Very scary. We need a strong government to protect us from giant corporations who acquire merge and acquire until they have a big enough share to manipulate the market to increase their profit. That’s not free enterprise. When the government helps them do it that’s fascism.

“Otherwise, we have the Corpocracy we deserve!”


Posted by: mike the cynic at March 30, 2010 11:04 AM
Comment #298235


“Democrats will tell you what you want to here and then do what special interests want, while Republicans will tell you what they want you to think and then do what special interests want.”

Mike the cynic, I would word it differently.

Democrats tell liberals what they want to believe, namely, we are trying hard but the Republicans are obstructing. Then they do what special interests want. Democrats tell progressives come on guy’s, get with the team, we need party unity; don’t worry, we will fix it later.

Republicans tell people what to think but, they do it in a way that reinforces the beliefs of conservatives and libertarians and then they do what special interests want.

For years, Democrats have worked with Republicans to fulfill the corporate agenda. It only stands to reason that the corporations would help the Democrats so, they wrote the Democrats a health care bill.

I am with you on everything else that you have said.

Posted by: jlw at March 30, 2010 6:28 PM
Comment #298244


David:

The corporations wrote the game plan. Rubin, Summers and Greenspan sat on the bench and wrote the plays. Clinton backpedaled into the pocket and passed the ball down field. Bush caught the ball on the 50 yard line and, with a block from Bernanke, ran in for the winning touchdown. The American people lost the game.

“On the other hand, Geithner, Bernanke, Dodd and a host of other Democrats have red-faced admitted to having not done enough and acted on the right information to, at the very least mitigate the downturn”

The mantra chanted by Rubin, Sommers and Greenspan was, there is no need to investigate, no need to regulate, THE MARKET WILL SELF-REGULATE. The mantra was regurgitated by the Bush economic team lead by financial expert, libertarian/conservative Republican and Son of Milt, Ben Bernanke. These people got away with this because the Congress, both Republicans and Democrats were paid to listen to them and ignore the whistle blowers.

Alan Greenspan went before Congress and admitted that he was wrong and that the theory that the market would self-regulate was a flawed theory. He then submitted his resignation.

Did Rubin resign from Citigroup? Did Geithner resign? No, Obama made him Sec of Treasury. Rubin wanted Summers in that position but Geithner is ok with Rubin and the banks. Did Bernanke resign? No, he got Greenspans job. I guess it is a requirement that a Republican chair the Fed. Dodd did not resign but he says he wont seek reelection, half honorable. And Larry Summers, the snake in the grass, Mr. there is no such thing as to much risk, the chief writer of the housing derivatives, leaves the Clinton White House and goes to Harvard. He gets kicked out of Harvard and ends up in the Obama Administration.

David, I don’t know where you have been for the last 20 years or so but, my observations have made it perfectly clear that public opinion has nothing to do with government legislation. Changing public opinion got Obama elected. As soon as he was elected he told public opinion sorry about your luck, but I am a pragmatist and corpocracy is the name of the game being played in Washington/Wall Street.

If not for independents, Obama would not be president.

If not for liberals, Obama would not be president.

If not for progressives, Obama would not be president.

I guess two out of three public opinions is ok. As for progressives, it is the same story they have been hearing for more than twenty years, WHERE ELSE ARE YOU GOING TO GO.

Posted by: jlw at March 30, 2010 8:21 PM
Comment #298250

jlw, I saw these same events, and did not see Greenspan admit he was wrong. Got a reliable reference for your assertion?

As late October, Greenspan was still defending his actions as Fed Chief, citing lack of authority as the reason for not intervening. What a crock.

Posted by: David R. Remer at March 30, 2010 9:00 PM
Comment #298253

jlw, I think you miss a major point. Anyone demonstrably qualified to be Treasurer or Economic Advisor by Obama would have had a role of responsibility in the melt down. Geithner has been a very effective Treasurer since coming into the Administration. I have watched most of his hearings on Capital Hill, and he does indeed know his job and what needs to be done to protect the future from a similar meltdown.

Same with Bernanke. Who among us has not learned from the mistakes made in our professional careers. I prefer someone who has learned from their mistakes than someone who has not yet made them or not willing to learn from them.

Summers, I know little about and cannot defend him or his views from a position of ignorance. Geithner and Bernanke however, I have a somewhat reserved sense of confidence in. What they think and say makes sense, and that is what I ask of leadership in our government.

As for the bigger picture of politics, I generally agree with your views. Politics corrupts good governance, and that is a very tough nut to crack, but, it helps when voters refuse to vote for such corruption.

I am seeing a lot of good coming from federal government this last year and several months, to include:

the Student Loan reform that my daughter will benefit from

the health care reform which my daughter will benefit from remaining on our family insurance policy until she is 27 at enormous savings

an economy which was rescued from a depression and which has kept our family in middle class income

significant progress in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and continued troop withdrawals from Iraq and vastly fewer American casualties there

several hundred dollars in tax cuts for our family last year

vast sums of bailout money returned and returning to the treasury avoiding reducing deficits by as much

and a vigorous return of stock market valuations which we have profited from significantly.

I understand other’s experience may vary, but, for all that is wrong and is going wrong in our federal government from Sup.Ct. rulings turning elections over to corporations to continued growth in our national debt, there is a lot that is getting done well or better, as well. I see improvement, and I have no doubt that the voter’s expectation and demand for better government results is driving many of these positive changes. Change takes time, and so far, I see positive changes taking place in many areas. Not enough to warrant voting for any incumbents, but, enough to prevent us from shipping our daughter overseas for college for her own safety and well being.

In the meantime, I continue to work for even greater improvement motivated by public distrust and disappointment in our political process and its corrupting influence on good governance. There is place for centrists and practical moderates in American politics, and I have found my place within it.

Posted by: David R. Remer at March 30, 2010 9:25 PM
Comment #298259

Some perspective. After the wall fell world leaders decided to go for free trade and a globalized economy. Some have stated that this was done to so intertwine world economies that no one country could start a nuclear war. The flip side is that the elites were free to use corporations to seize world resources, monopolize production and otherwise, do what corporations do when left to regulate themselves.
Having watched ‘free trade’ play out, beginning with the Regan era, the world economies, excluding a half dozen or so cheap labor markets, have declined, giving us a worldwide great recession. For reasons still not concrete in my mind, the US government/corpocracy has been on a binge to break the back of the US middle class worker and is still at it, pissing away trillions on every crisis they can create. Now each household is indebted to approx $200k. Federal debt is 53% of GDP. Yet the spending continues. HC bill, new cap and trade coming, Fed pushing for amnesty to take control ($trillions more) of another 10-20M folks. We know the story.
Today, in the middle of the great recession, most world leaders, certainly from the developed world, are still touting that ‘free trade’ and globalization is the greatest thing since canned beer. Yet, the people in most of those countries are strongly opposed to ‘free trade’ and globalization.
So, what are we to do, to think? Give the elites another 10 – 20 – 30 – 50 years to get it right? As I can tell the US corpocracy is clueless as to what should be done to improve things. Or, things are going according to their plan which would be to make us a lot poorer to enable us to compete against the cheapest labor in the world. They have no jobs plan, talking us into a ‘jobless recovery’. Understandable. There is no way in hell jobs can be created in this country under the present ‘globalized’ business model. The corpocracy understands that. The people understand that. Yet the government continues pissing away another $T on a jobs program designed to provide extended unemployment insurance to maintain the status quo awhile longer. They have no clue, unless their plan is to drive the US worker to $4/hr wages so we can begin to compete with cheap labor markets. I believe that, and blog about it a lot.
Then, as the rep’s of ‘we the people’ what has/is the corpocracy legislators doing/done. Both parties have gone hook, line and sinker for free trade and globalization. There was no debate, just secretive meetings with the G7, G20, WTO, IMF, NAU, etc. Both parties have worked to break the back of the middle class worker. Both parties bailed out the corpocracy and offered job training for the jobless recovery. Both parties have abided by their international corpocracy agreements to allow corporations free mobility, including the mobility of workers. Neither party will close the border to illegal immigration as they are beholden to their corpocracy agreements through the WTO, NAFTA and the AFTA’s.
In my opinion the corpocracy has stretched their buttholes over the heads of the American people and are taking one big dump after another. The duopoly has treated our national sovereignty and our Constitution as so much asswipe.
People around the world are in the same boat as us and are strongly opposing free trade and globalization, some totally and some in its present form.
So, what should be done? IMO, we don’t need wealth redistribution, or bigger government, or government run HC, education, etc. IMO, that is the wrong approach. Trying to add patches and fill cracks in a broken system of government is totally fruitless. To proceed further with this duopoly/corpocracy is dangerous/detrimental to the survival of our country.
We don’t need wealth redistribution, we do need living wage jobs that will allow folks to buy HC insurance and pay for their kids education, etc. We don’t need to be supporting millions of illegals, we do need to adopt trade agreements with countries whereby we work to establish ‘needed’ economical resources in their home country (stop exchanging diamonds for condums in Africa and build them some food production/processing facilities for example). We do not need mandated or public HC, we do need HC reform such as busting up the monopolies in HC, nationwide competition, tort reform, allow for the purchase of drugs, HC and insurance through foreign markets, etc. We don’t need the corpocracy sitting on renewable energy development, we do need to allow competition in the market place to exist again. We don’t need the Corpocracy jerking the strings of regulatory agencies, we do need a government that will enforce anti-trust laws to bust up the monopolies/conglomerates/trading companies, creating competition and jobs.
The US was a unique country. Strong, proud, innovative, a country of laws, respectful of our sovereignty and our Constitution. Different landscape today. Beggaring China to keep us afloat. Being dragged down the road to something akin to a European Socialist government so we can ‘fit in’ with the rest of the world. Damn the corpocracy.
Therefore, IMO, through indolence and many other reasons, people have allowed their corpocratic government to get out of control. And, it will take the actions of people to correct the situation. IMO, nothing – nothing, can be done to improve the situation until we can remove the money influence from government. The duopoly will not, can not do that. It requires abolishing Corporate Personhood and Money Is Free Speech law. It requires real campaign finance reform to achieve clean elections, devoid of the money influence. All are anathema to the corpocracy. They will fight to death over these three things.
Therefore, IMO, a new 3rd Party with a ‘different political attitude’ is required. A Party designed for the 21st century, founded in rules that prevent the Party from ever being co-opted (as is happening to the TEA Partiers at this moment) by the money influence. A Party that presents an agenda to reform government, void of social issues such as HC and abortion. A Party that can achieve reform of government and keep it that way.
Otherwise, we have the corpocratic-socialistic government we deserve.

Posted by: Roy Ellis at March 30, 2010 9:40 PM
Comment #298292

Roy said: “Today, in the middle of the great recession, most world leaders, certainly from the developed world, are still touting that ‘free trade’ and globalization is the greatest thing since canned beer.”

Roy, globalization was, and is, an inevitable outcome of the free enterprise capitalism the U.S. fostered and spawned around the globe. Billions of the worlds people are better off for it, having been brought into its middle class creation in every modern nation on the globe.

One either accepts free enterprise capitalism with checks and balances, or one rejects it for another alternative. The alternatives have proven themselves failures.

To rail against globalization of economies is like railing against open legal immigration policy throughout America’s history. Fruitless, except for political rhetorical purposes.

A vastly more productive cause is to rail for effective oversight and accountability and fairness practices enforced in international trade. I used to argue for a more independent isolationist policy for the U.S., until I learned how inextricably dependent the American people are on foreign trade and imports of not only products but capital, to keep our nation’s economy healthy. It hasn’t been a huge success yet, but, we haven’t collapsed as an economy yet, either.

I don’t know if we can avoid economic disaster resulting for this mounting indebtedness. I do know that disaster will come far more quickly and harder if we attempt to go isolationist in international trade. This is where Ron Paul and I part ways, as his vision of returning to 19th century economic paradigms is 1) entirely impossible and 2) would bring about the very economic collapse he seeks to avoid.

Obama is going after 100’s of billions in tax evasion by corporations and wealthy individuals. That is a good beginning. Extending international banking oversight and regulation is also a good beginning on ameliorating the potential shocks to our own economy by banking failures in other nations and vice versa. Beefing up banking and IT security measures is vital and underway. Moving toward energy independence is an incredibly important step in the right direction.

The present reality is what we have to deal with in the context of future potential realities. We have an administration which is doing just that. One of the most important things I learned from studying psychology is that fear closes doors of opportunity and halts change and stunts personal growth. Americans are afraid. Understandable. But, they also wisely chose a president who is not letting fear cloud his reason and creativity in addressing the nation’s challenges. What he needs is a Congress with balls enough to lead in similar fashion, and enough Americans with balls enough to place their bets on a course of action, rather than couch themselves in a corner of fear and paranoia.

So far, so good. A lot of very positive things have happened and are happening since the last election to put this economic calamity behind us, and defend against a repeat in the future. Such big measures cannot occur overnight in a government structured as ours is. Let’s hope we can beat the clock on making these changes soon enough to avert dire future scenarios.

Posted by: David R. Remer at March 31, 2010 2:13 PM
Comment #298307


David, I made one mistake with Greenspan. His resignation came three years before he was grill by the Waxman committee. The hearing occurred last October and was headline news. The headline in the New York Times was: Greenspan Admits He Was Wrong.

Greenspan and others, primarily Rubin and Sommers were successful in convincing a bought off Congress that there was no need to scrutinize the derivatives market because the market was fully capable or self-regulation and had every incentive, namely the best interest of their share holders, to do so.

I think that history has proven time and again that the markets idea of self-regulation is to create a frenzy that drives up stock prices, strip the market of capital, create a recession or a depression and get the government/taxpayers to bail us out of it.

The other charge against Greenspan is that he kept interest rates so low that it encouraged the housing bubble. I would argue that he not only created the bubble with low interest rates but that the steady increase in rates from 1.5%-to-5.5% between late 2004 and late 2006 burst the bubble. It is as if it were deliberate, fuel the bubble, extract profits, bust the bubble.

Whether or not Geithner is doing a good job is irrelevant. He made a comment about the derivatives market in 2003, I believe, and then he was silent or was silenced. Obama’s pool of potential Sec. of Treasury or economic advisers was not limited to Sommers and Geithner, both of whom played leading rolls in the housing/derivatives ripoff or at the least, were tainted by it. I don’t know if Geithner, Greenspan or Bernanke benefited from the housing/derivatives market or not but, Sommers and Rubin certainly did, big time. There is more to the story of their selections.

Roy, the problem is not free trade or world trade. The problem is corpocracy. There is virtually no way for our government to spend money in a way that doesn’t benefit the corpocracy.

One can argue that big government has increased this problem but not created it. It existed in the form of Robber Barons controlling the government before it was a big government.

As to how corpocracy has not just maintained but increased it power within the government, David Remer gave you part of the answer. They are called centrists, practical (pragmatic) moderates and their politicians who stand in line on envelop day the way solders do at mail call. Then there is a public addicted to a mass consumption materialistic lifestyle. finally, there is a huge minority in this country that is so convinced that they don’t count, they don’t participate in the election process. I think it was Bush who said, you don’t need a majority to rule, you only need 35%.

It is one of those hypocrisy things, we rail against the corpocracy while at the same time we demand the benefits that we receive because of the corpocracy. Exploitation is what makes the world go round and corporations backed by government are really good at it.

Posted by: jlw at March 31, 2010 6:45 PM
Comment #298320

jlw and David, corporations are entities established by government to conduct commerce. Government can change the laws relating to corporations. Here is an article from reclaimdemocracy.org that gives a brief history of the corporation.

“When American colonists declared independence from England in 1776, they also freed themselves from control by English corporations that extracted their wealth and dominated trade. After fighting a revolution to end this exploitation, our country’s founders retained a healthy fear of corporate power and wisely limited corporations exclusively to a business role. Corporations were forbidden from attempting to influence elections, public policy, and other realms of civic society.

Initially, the privilege of incorporation was granted selectively to enable activities that benefited the public, such as construction of roads or canals. Enabling shareholders to profit was seen as a means to that end.

The states also imposed conditions (some of which remain on the books, though unused) like these:

* Corporate charters (licenses to exist) were granted for a limited time and could be revoked promptly for violating laws.

* Corporations could engage only in activities necessary to fulfill their chartered purpose.

* Corporations could not own stock in other corporations nor own any property that was not essential to fulfilling their chartered purpose.

* Corporations were often terminated if they exceeded their authority or caused public harm.

* Owners and managers were responsible for criminal acts committed on the job.

* Corporations could not make any political or charitable contributions nor spend money to influence law-making.

For 100 years after the American Revolution, legislators maintained tight controll of the corporate chartering process. Because of widespread public opposition, early legislators granted very few corporate charters, and only after debate. Citizens governed corporations by detailing operating conditions not just in charters but also in state constitutions and state laws. Incorporated businesses were prohibited from taking any action that legislators did not specifically allow.

States also limited corporate charters to a set number of years. Unless a legislature renewed an expiring charter, the corporation was dissolved and its assets were divided among shareholders. Citizen authority clauses limited capitalization, debts, land holdings, and sometimes, even profits. They required a company’s accounting books to be turned over to a legislature upon request. The power of large shareholders was limited by scaled voting, so that large and small investors had equal voting rights. Interlocking directorates were outlawed. Shareholders had the right to remove directors at will.

In Europe, charters protected directors and stockholders from liability for debts and harms caused by their corporations. American legislators explicitly rejected this corporate shield. The penalty for abuse or misuse of the charter was not a plea bargain and a fine, but dissolution of the corporation.

In 1819 the U.S. Supreme Court tried to strip states of this sovereign right by overruling a lower court’s decision that allowed New Hampshire to revoke a charter granted to Dartmouth College by King George III. The Court claimed that since the charter contained no revocation clause, it could not be withdrawn. The Supreme Court’s attack on state sovereignty outraged citizens. Laws were written or re-written and new state constitutional amendments passed to circumvent the Dartmouth ruling. Over several decades starting in 1844, nineteen states amended their constitutions to make corporate charters subject to alteration or revocation by their legislatures. As late as 1855 it seemed that the Supreme Court had gotten the people’s message when in Dodge v. Woolsey it reaffirmed state’s powers over “artificial bodies.”

But the men running corporations pressed on. Contests over charter were battles to control labor, resources, community rights, and political sovereignty. More and more frequently, corporations were abusing their charters to become conglomerates and trusts. They converted the nation’s resources and treasures into private fortunes, creating factory systems and company towns. Political power began flowing to absentee owners, rather than community-rooted enterprises.

The industrial age forced a nation of farmers to become wage earners, and they became fearful of unemployment—a new fear that corporations quickly learned to exploit. Company towns arose. and blacklists of labor organizers and workers who spoke up for their rights became common. When workers began to organize, industrialists and bankers hired private armies to keep them in line. They bought newspapers to paint businessmen as heroes and shape public opinion. Corporations bought state legislators, then announced legislators were corrupt and said that they used too much of the public’s resources to scrutinize every charter application and corporate operation.

Government spending during the Civil War brought these corporations fantastic wealth. Corporate executives paid “borers” to infest Congress and state capitals, bribing elected and appointed officials alike. They pried loose an avalanche of government financial largesse. During this time, legislators were persuaded to give corporations limited liability, decreased citizen authority over them, and extended durations of charters. Attempts were made to keep strong charter laws in place, but with the courts applying legal doctrines that made protection of corporations and corporate property the center of constitutional law, citizen sovereignty was undermined. As corporations grew stronger, government and the courts became easier prey. They freely reinterpreted the U.S. Constitution and transformed common law doctrines.

One of the most severe blows to citizen authority arose out of the 1886 Supreme Court case of Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad. Though the court did not make a ruling on the question of “corporate personhood,” thanks to misleading notes of a clerk, the decision subsequently was used as precedent to hold that a corporation was a “natural person.”

From that point on, the 14th Amendment, enacted to protect rights of freed slaves, was used routinely to grant corporations constitutional “personhood.” Justices have since struck down hundreds of local, state and federal laws enacted to protect people from corporate harm based on this illegitimate premise. Armed with these “rights,” corporations increased control over resources, jobs, commerce, politicians, even judges and the law.

A United States Congressional committee concluded in 1941, “The principal instrument of the concentration of economic power and wealth has been the corporate charter with unlimited power….”

Many U.S.-based corporations are now transnational, but the corrupted charter remains the legal basis for their existence. At ReclaimDemocracy.org, we believe citizens can reassert the convictions of our nation’s founders who struggled successfully to free us from corporate rule in the past. These changes must occur at the most fundamental level — the U.S. Constitution.

Thanks to our friends at the Program on Corporations, Law and Democracy (POCLAD) for their permission to use excerpts of their research for this article.
Please visit our Corporate Personhood page for a huge library of articles exploring this topic more deeply. You might also be interested to read our proposed Constitutional Amendments to revoke illegitimate corporate power, erode the power of money over elections, and establish an affirmative constitutional right to vote.”

Other web excerpts on Corp Personhood:
ARCATA On Wednesday, May 20, 2004, the northern California city of Arcata passed a resolution declaring Corporate Personhood illegitimate and undemocratic. The resolution calls for town hall meetings to develop legislation that would prohibit corporations from using Corporate Personhood to challenge Arcata laws that restrict corporations. Seventy-five Arcatans and supporting Humboldt County residents packed City Hall to influence the Councils decision.

And - - College Republicans join PSS in opposition of corporate personhood. On February 10, 2010, In Campus News

And - - I don’t think it’s presumptuous to claim that the majority of people reading this right now are against the notion of corporate personhood. (If you’re for it, I’d very much like to hear from you!)
In “Really Simple: We Need to Get Rid of the Perverse Notion of ‘Corporate Personhood’,” Alternet’s Joshua Holland tells us that People for the American Way
is mounting a campaign to preserve our nominal democracy by passing a Constitutional amendment giving Congress the power to regulate corporate campaign money.

And - - Like Ron Paul, John Murphy is opposed to corporate welfare, corporate personhood and the quartering of US troops in 700 military bases throughout 127 …

And - - Scalia
… ridicules ‘the corporation-hating quotations the dissent has dredged up’ … and ends with a conservative belief: ‘To exclude or impede corporate speech is to muzzle the principal agents of the modern free economy.’”
From Nader - - This corporatist, anti-voter decision is so extreme that it should galvanize a grassroots effort to enact a Constitutional Amendment to once and for all end corporate personhood and curtail the corrosive impact of big money on politics. It is indeed time for a Constitutional amendment to prevent corporate campaign contributions from commercializing our elections and drowning out the civic and political voices and values of citizens and voters. It is way overdue to overthrow “King Corporation” and restore the sovereignty of “We the People”!

jlw and David, changing the law as to how a corporation operates would not significantly change the corporation itself. Maybe a few more, or few less papers to file every year or so. Most people would prefer to remove the money influence from government. That will require some changes in the laws regulating corporations.

As an aside: come election time watch the lefties and righties run for the center. Obama wants to drill for oil in all the wrong places and McCain did a 180 and now wants troops on the border. I’ve no doubt the voting public will buy into it.

jlw, “the problem is not free trade or world trade.” Well, since the inception of free trade, 25 or so years ago. we’ve run huge trade deficits year over year. Between 2000 and 2006 worker wages fell or were stagnant. Millions of our best jobs went overseas permanently and millions more jobs were outsourced while millions of illegals (part of our trade agreeements - remember the NAU) took the jobs that ‘Americans don’t want to do’.

Therefore, IMO, the major problems we have have stems from Corpocracy and this intentional misnomer, ‘free trade’. I found Barry Lynn’s “Cornered” a good read. He relates how unregulated corporations have megasized, stifeled competition, etc. Rather than innovate or R&D rhey will refuse to let new products on the market, etc. The Corpocracy and free trade tag teaming on the working man!

72% of folks want troops on the border. What will our new centrist President do? Think NAFTA, WTO, etc.

Otherwise, we have the Corpocratic-Socialistic government we deserve.

Posted by: Roy Ellis at March 31, 2010 10:41 PM
Comment #298327


Roy, I agree that there is no such creature as free trade.

Since you quoted Ralph Nader, you should know why I, as a progressive, voted for him.

The simple truth is that the buck stops with We The People. For the most part, we set on our rears and protest in silence. Imagine if everyone who opposed NAFTA had taken to the streets to protest before it was enacted. Congress would not have passed it. It was a pork passed bill. They didn’t have the votes to pass it so, ample amounts of pork were passed around to get the necessary votes for passage.

It is the same with illegal immigrants. If those in favor of the illegals can get a million people in the streets of our cities, why can’t the anti illegal immigrant people do the same.

Civil disobedience can change the course of government over night on any issue. In my opinion this could be the way for citizens to re-introduce democracy in a country where it has become a mockery.

If at all possible, don’t buy made in China. Don’t buy corporate products unless you absolutely have to.

One thing is certain, we are not going to get out of this mess without a lot of pain and suffering. This is what the status quo counts on. This is why the government is willing to borrow your grandchildren into poverty to prevent the economy from going into a depression. The status quo would be in serious jeopardy if that were to happen.

Posted by: jlw at March 31, 2010 11:38 PM
Comment #298337

Roy, great last commentary and quotation.

I have been railing against the corporate influence on government here at WB for over 6 years now. Getting change won’t come from the politicians. It has to come from the voters.

I will put some of this on VOID’s Facebook page. Many thanks, Roy. Good stuff.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 1, 2010 1:57 AM
Comment #298340

All
A reminder that the US is not an island unto itself. Global trade is the hope of billions. Managing it for the benefit of workers and not just the benefit of owners is the struggle of the century everywhere in the world.

Posted by: bills at April 1, 2010 7:15 AM
Comment #298346

Yes, we well know the source of our problems. No more tautology required. We need to focus on SOLUTIONS. What if all the agenda issues on Republic Sentry were removed except for the abolishment of CP and MIFS, and implementation of campaign finance reform? Would some in the middle column support such a narrowly defined Party?

Achieve reform on those few issues and you’ve solved 95% of our problems. Removing the money influence and setting up clean elections whereby parties are funded by bulk donations from individuals indiscriminate of Party affiliation. Who would not want to support that?

Posted by: Roy Ellis at April 1, 2010 2:29 PM
Comment #298365

Roy I agree with David regarding the comments on the first half of your previous comment, however your anointing Glenn Beck as someone who supports the issues raised in your comments and your blaming of progressives as the cause of the corporate takeover of the country doesn’t jive with these comments. To agree to anything to do with the Republic Sentry party is out of the question for me at this point.

Posted by: j2t2 at April 1, 2010 9:47 PM
Comment #298367

j2t2. Beck’s show tomorrow, Friday, will be discussing ‘how to identify a progressive’. I’ll be watching. I’m looking for answers as to why things are the way they are re the political scene. I agree, right wing progressives seems a stretch. Less so for the left and that ball of radicals in the executive. Tomorrows show should be internesting.

Posted by: Roy Ellis at April 1, 2010 11:23 PM
Comment #298369

Roy
Beck? You must be kidding. The same Beck that thinks Bruce Springsteen and the song,”Born in the USA” are “anti-American”?

http://bigthink.com/ideas/19039

If you must find a populist messiah please look around for one that does not have their head so far up their….

Posted by: bills at April 2, 2010 1:08 AM
Comment #298371

Roy et al

I suport the HCR law as a step in the right direction. I think it was a strecth to include provisions relating to student loan reform but it helped the numbers. I am really concerned that BHO snuck in another provision to make the cost look smaller without any public debate.

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=125461390

Posted by: bills at April 2, 2010 1:21 AM
Comment #298376

bills, IMO the HC bill is like a poison pill with delayed action. The chickens won’t come home to roost for 5 or 6 years. By that time Obama will likely be running as a candidate for some world government somewhere, perhaps Chief WTO. Estimated that in the 1st 10 yrs the HC bill will cost us $6T dollars. Many companies writing down their value based on HC cost. AT&T wrote down $1B. GE and GM didn’t do write downs as they are mostly government owned now.

Now the Fed has xferred regulation of HC from the state to the Fed. Something never intended by the Founder’s. the FED was given 17 specific powers. States retained health, safety, and public welfare and morality. The FED can’t tell state’s how to regulate and tax healthcare. For instance, the FED is telling Florida they have to absorb 1.2M new medicaid recipients and if they don’t they will lose their Medicaid funding. Unlike the Fed, State’s have a budget and most are busted. Some 38 states are going to sue the FED. No precedent for the FED mandating HC or anything else. First time the Supreme Court will hear such a case.

Posted by: Roy Ellis at April 2, 2010 9:13 AM
Comment #298388

bills,

That link leads to an April Fools hoax…

Posted by: Marysdude at April 2, 2010 1:45 PM
Comment #298399


Beck’s show was an FAQ show between him and a guest audience. To the question ‘how do you identify a progressive’ Glenn replied that look to whether they support big government or not. From a broad brush approach I think that would be a fairly accurate way of discriminating progressive ideology.

Such a broad brush paints in a number of Republicans. From a 2005 Wash. Post article: “The number of registered lobbyists in Washington has more than doubled since 2000 to more than 34,750 while the amount that lobbyists charge their new clients has increased by as much as 100 percent. Only a few other businesses have enjoyed greater prosperity in an otherwise fitful economy.


The lobbying boom has been caused by three factors, experts say: rapid growth in government, Republican control of both the White House and Congress, and wide acceptance among corporations that they need to hire professional lobbyists to secure their share of federal benefits.

“There’s unlimited business out there for us,” said Robert L. Livingston, a Republican former chairman of the House Appropriations Committee and now president of a thriving six-year-old lobbying firm. “Companies need lobbying help.”
Lobbying firms can’t hire people fast enough. Starting salaries have risen to about $300,000 a year for the best-connected aides eager to “move downtown” from Capitol Hill or the Bush administration. Once considered a distasteful post-government vocation, big-bucks lobbying is luring nearly half of all lawmakers who return to the private sector when they leave Congress, according to a forthcoming study by Public Citizen’s Congress Watch.”

Glenn is big on the Constitution and maybe he can create a movement that can save us from ourselves. Wasn’t it Jefferson who said our demise would come from within?

Posted by: Roy Ellis at April 2, 2010 7:01 PM
Comment #298402

Dude
DUH…your so,so,serious!

Posted by: bills at April 2, 2010 9:38 PM
Comment #298417

Say Roy did Beck define “big government” or do his followers assume it to be the size of government in terms of dollars or in the numbers of employees or programs? Has he proposed specific plans to dismantle the government or has he just spouted generalities that appeal to the extremist conservatives who ask not the questions? Has Beck mentioned an amendment to repeal the notion of corporate personhood or to restrict the financing of elections? Has Beck determined the exact right size for government?

It seems to me Roy, that Glenn “McCarthy” Beck is trying to use his bully pulpit to denigrate the term progressive much like Limbaugh did to the word liberal many years ago. This type of witch hunt serves no useful purpose other than to agitate the wing nuts that cling to Becks words as if they had intelligence in them. Once you have identified these progressives do you propose to put them in front of HUAC type tribunals and jail them for their subversive thoughts in the same manner as Sen. McCarthy did? After all their can be only one understanding of the constitution and that must be Beck’s version right?

“Glenn is big on the Constitution and maybe he can create a movement that can save us from ourselves. Wasn’t it Jefferson who said our demise would come from within?”

Big on the constitution as far as what Roy? What kind of movement do you forsee Beck creating? He seems to egg on the RNC and Faux sponsored Tea party types but as far as a movement to save us from some evil he and his ilk has determined to be “progressives” sounds rather silly to me. This isn’t Jefferson but….

“Only Americans can hurt America-Dwight D. Eisenhower”

What advantage do you see in aligning your 3rd party with such a narrow and dangerous influence as extreme right wing ideology? They had their run and controlled both houses and the presidency just a few short years ago. They did as lousy a job as has ever been done by our government. Instead of accepting responsibility and examining their failed ideology they pointed fingers and then said it was the work of liberals and progressives in the repub party that was responsible for our current situation. Nothing was fixed, they did not live up to their rhetoric or their ideology and yet you seem to want to return to this type of conservative abuse because Beck says so.

“There’s nothing so absurd that if you repeat it often enough, people will believe it.” William James (1842-1910)The father of modern Psychology

Posted by: j2t2 at April 3, 2010 11:42 AM
Comment #298422

j2t2, when I took the idea of a 3rd party seriously Beck wasn’t on my radar screen. As he began to gain an audience he voiced many of my political thoughts. It’s like he stole my game plan.
Beck believes that the public left politics to the politicians for so long that we now have the best government money can buy. He believes that the only way we can restore sanity to government is through an educated voting public. Toward that end, he is giving his audience history lessons going back to the magna carta and Roman Empire, etc. He is not trying to start a political party or provide solutions for every political issue. He does point out policies he believes is wrong, immigration, cap and trade, etc. He feels we should know our history, understand how things got to be as they are and honor the Founder’s and the Constitution. People love it and I do too.

I am still trying to sort out this Progressive thing. A Progressive movement has been active in the world prior to nationhood. I believe I am correct in that Glenn sees the movement as anti-religion and pro-big government, working to evolve the Constitution without public awareness. I’m thinking he may be right but my jury is still hearing evidence. It’s fair to say that both parties are ignoring the public and the Constitution in building up ever bigger government, taking power from the States, etc. Now, as to who is doing that as far as a ‘movement’ or an ideology I’m not sure. But, Glenn is and he points the finger at Progresssives. I don’t have the resources or the time or the interest to try and figure out who the Progressives are and how they vote on each issue, etc. But, I will weigh Glenn’s evidence as he makes his case. I’ve learned a lot from his history lessons.

IMO, we, as a nation have been drug down the road by big business/special interests entities who concentrate to a fault on the bottom line and little else.

I’m putting an article together as I poke that gives some perspective as to my ideas re a 3rd party. No political ideology or finger pointing involved. Just practical solutions that can be achieved through reform of government. And, for anyone who wants to learn something of our political history and history in general I would recommend tuning in with Beck.

Posted by: Roy Ellis at April 3, 2010 12:53 PM
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