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Health Care & Environment
11.18 Air pollution levels ‘forcing families to move out of cities’ [like from desertification, lack of drinkable water and rising oceans, there will also be pollution-caused immigration until humans fix things]
11.17 Policies of China, Russia and Canada threaten 5C climate change, study finds [Climate catastrophe is increasingly likely without worldwide organization, funding and commitment to winning THE WAR AGAINST GLOBAL WARMING.]
11.16 How pesticide bans can prevent tens of thousands of suicides a year [how many thousands more die early from eating pesticide-laced food?]
11.15 The Earth is in a death spiral. It will take radical action to save us [fossil fuel burning, un-recyclable plastic production/use and methane gas release must cease ASAP.]
11.15 The long read: The plastic backlash: what's behind our sudden rage – and will it make a difference? [the world wants to throw-up...]
11.15 Claws out: crab fishermen sue 30 oil firms over climate change [workers are waking-up...]
11.12 This Land is Your Land: The Zinke effect: how the US interior department became a tool of industry [behaving ignorantly again...]
News Media Matters
US Politics, Policy & 'Culture'
11.19 Last Week Tonight with John Oliver 11/18/2018 (HBO) [29:26 video]
11.19 Trump Says He Was 'Fully Briefed' and Also 'Not Briefed Yet' But Either Way Saudi Crown Prince 'Absolutely' Not Involved Because Trump Knows 'Everything That Went On' Without Listening to Tape of Khashoggi Murder
11.19 'We Need New Leaders, Period': Progressive Newcomers Urge Democrats to Embrace Bold Agenda or Face Primary Challenges [Current Democrat leaders are highly compromised by corporate donations]
11.18 Trump says Pelosi deserves speakership, offers Republican votes [An affirmation of Pelosi's unsuitability]
11.18 Khanna to Pelosi: Don't Just Create Green New Deal Select Committee, Make Ocasio-Cortez Its Chair [Will Pelosi earnestly change, or end her career in disgrace?]
11.18 Chuck Schumer, Feckless Hack [Neoliberal Democrats must go!]
11.18 What the State of the VA Tells Us About Trump’s War on Welfare [Privatizing often results in outright fraud and higher costs by private prisons, privatized health insurance and health care, privatized public schools and online "colleges" like Trump University]
11.17 As Energy for Medicare for All Explodes, Steny Hoyer's Plan Includes Waiting for Trump to Help Make Obamacare Better [Another who is unfit to be Democrat leader]
11.17 'A Staggeringly Bad Idea': Outrage as Pelosi Pushes Tax Rule That Would 'Kneecap the Progressive Agenda' [Unfit to be Democrat leader]
11.14 The Guardian view on Yemen’s misery: the west is complicit [WAR CRIMES]
Economics, Crony Capitalism
11.19 Bankrupt Sears wants to give executives $19 million in bonuses [blatantly immoral and sick to richly reward those who led the company into the bankruptcy]
11.18 Big Pharma Bankrolled Pro-Trump Group As Trump Pushed Pharma Tax Cut [Corruption Central!]
11.16 Amazon’s HQ2 Will Get a Tax Break Designed to Help the Poor [a Republican program that directly helps participating wealthy companies—but only helps workers if and when 'trickle-down' occurs.]
11.16 Trump doesn’t want to punish Saudi Arabia over Khashoggi. His new sanctions prove it. [George W. Bush made a similar immoral decision for the same oily reasons after 9-11, protecting Saudi defense contracts while facilitating the slaughter of poorer Arab "terrorists" in the region.]
International & Futurism
11.18 France demands UK climate pledge in return for Brexit trade deal [Excellent!]
11.17 Thousands gather to block London bridges in climate rebellion [We're losing WWIII because the enemy is invisible while we're like frogs slowly cooking. We aren't informed enough to be alarmed, but must get organized and motivated to fight back. We need a War Plan to ruthlessly pursue the fight of our lives!]
NEOLIBERAL UTOPIA FOR THE VERY RICH, ECONOMIC ARMAGEDDON FOR OTHERS:
Wrecking the American Dream
The America older generations knew no longer exists, the dream of millions wiped out in real time, and it's also happening throughout Europe.
Wednesday, 6 October 2010
A government-business cabal is so greedy it is wrecking the American dream for enormous profits at the public's expense unless enough outrage erupts to stop it.
Long planned, the current economic storm erupted violently in late 2007. It wasn't by accident. It was engineered years back, so financial racketeers could profit from wrecking global economies and destroying their middle class, including America's.
On February 1, 2009, former high-level Wall Street and government insider, Catherine Austin Fitts, explained it an article headlined, "Financial Coup d'Etat," saying:
Many trillions of dollars have been stolen, shifted from public to elitist private hands - by far, the greatest ever wealth transfer in history, a global heist, sucking capital out of one country after another, including America. It's an ongoing "de-moderniz(ation)" process, transforming Western countries into third world ones - in real time, in plain sight, yet few people understand.
It's a government-business cabal for enormous profits through "legislation, contracts, regulation (or lack of it), financing, subsidies," and massive handouts to Wall Street favorites. Carefully rigged for powerful elitists, the public is so cleverly harmed that few understand what's happening - literally that their livelihoods, welfare and lives are being destroyed in real time. The America older generations knew no longer exists, the dream of millions wiped out, and it's also happening throughout Europe.
In his September 30 article titled, "The Neoliberal Experiment and Europe's anti-Austerity Strikes," Michael Hudson explained sinister plans "to drastically change the laws and structure of how European society will function for the next generation. If (successful, they'll) break up Europe, destroy the internal market, and render that continent a backwater. This is how serious the financial coup d'etat has become. And it is going to get much worse - quickly....The bankers are demanding that (governments) rebuild their loan reserves at labor's expense." It's also Obama's scheme, shifting greater wealth to the rich, impoverishing the rest.
Throughout the West, neoliberals are in control. "From Brussels to Latvia, (they) aim to shrink their economies to roll back wage levels by 30 percent or more - depression-style levels - (for) 'more surplus'....to pay in debt service," tribute to global bankers, turning Europe "into a banana republic." It's also planned for America.
"This requires dictatorship." Labor is targeted for destruction. "Europe (like America) is entering an era of totalitarian neoliberal rule." So-called "free markets" aren't possible without it. But wait - "This is economic suicide, taxing labor, not the rich, and at the same time "slash(ing) wages and pensions, cut(ting) back public spending and employment, and shrink(ing) the economy," turning Western societies into dystopian backwaters, a dark future unfolding in real time.
In his October 2 International Forecaster report, former insider and long-time financial expert Bob Chapman adds more about America, saying:
"Small amounts would go into" government retirement R-bonds, the larger portion earmarked for Wall Street - the usual suspects profiting, including Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Bank of America, and other giants for even greater market control than already, and far more capital to manipulate for profit. Chapman calls it "monopoly control and subjugation of worldwide investments, a total hold on the control of all investments" to scam the public more than ever and head them deeper into poverty, exactly what Washington and Western governments propose.
On the pretext of reform, destroying Medicare and Social Security are also planned by privatizing them, earmarking them for Wall Street, the same way 401ks killed corporate pensions.
The House Republicans' "Pledge to America" aims to wreck them by promising to save them, including by "reviewing Social Security and other entitlement programs" - meaning, let Wall Street bandits, not Washington run them.
A longtime GOP priority, congressional Republicans, Reps. Paul Ryan, Kevin McCarthy, and Eric Cantor explained it in their book, titled "Young Guns: A New Generation of Conservative Leaders," proposing privatizing Social Security and replacing Medicare with a voucher system that amounts to the same thing. If enacted, of course, it will leave workers and seniors high and dry by providing Wall Street racketeers with a new opportunity for pillage.
Democrats have the same plan, to be unveiled in the lame duck session on the pretext of deficit reduction and fiscal austerity, ideas Obama endorses. On February 18, he signed an Executive Order, establishing a "bipartisan National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform" (a deficit reduction commission) to slash social spending, focusing heavily on Medicare and Social Security.
Stacked with neoliberal ideologues, Congress will get its recommendations during the lame duck session, and according to observers, then enact legislation before the 112th body's first session in January. On the pretext of saving the economy, bipartisan chicanery plans to wreck it, leaving millions high and dry on their own.
Fiscal responsibility means class warfare, the agenda Professor Carroll Quigley explained in his 1966 book, titled "Tragedy & Hope: A History of the World in Our Time," saying:
With bipartisan support, their plan is virtually complete. It will be advanced in the lame duck session, then further by the 112th Congress until all social programs end and finance capital has full control.
America's Economic Landscape
On September 19, the Business Cycle Dating Committee of the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), "determined that a trough in business activity occurred in the US economy in June 2009. The trough marks the end of the recession that began in December 2007."
Stacked with corporate economists (practicing what Michael Hudson calls "junk economics"), the types featured on business channels and in mainstream publications, the NBER is a Wall Street tool.
Non-member David Rosenberg has another view, saying "it is very difficult (getting) excited about (today's) economic landscape."
Unemployment is dangerously high. It'll worsen, not improve, and there's "absolutely no recovery in bank lending - especially to households." In fact, consumer loans and real estate credit keep dropping, hardly a sign of recovery, besides disturbing consumer sentiment levels, a deep housing depression, and any number of other indicators showing a hugely troubled economy. It's why independent observers like Hudson and Chapman expect worse to come, a tsunami of economic pain, hitting ordinary people hardest.
In 2008/09, the Fed's near zero interest rate policy and quantitative easy money (QE1) failed. Sustainable economic growth, job creation, revived consumer spending, and normalized housing haven't happened. No matter. Though already underway, on September 21, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) announced QE2, saying:
In other words, money creation and asset buying will continue even though nearly two years of doing it failed. Key indicators show deep economic weakness. Gold is at record highs, and bond markets are signaling a depressed economic climate.
According to investment analyst Claus Vogt, the economic picture is "bleak....With the housing market in shambles, bank lending contracting, and consumers tapped out, there is no base for a sustainable recovery."
"Will QE2 help? QE1's failure showed even "the mighty Fed was not strong enough to" reverse the trend. "I can't see a single reason" to think this time is different. "If anything, I expect the Fed's efforts to prove even more ineffective this time around" because QE2 is its only remaining tool. QE1's failure proved it ineffective.
Moreover, Bernanke knows it, having argued (with former Fed vice chairman Alan Blinder) against this type multiplier in 1988. In addition, bank reserves aren't being loaned. They're being stockpiling or held at the Fed for above-market rates. As a result, QE2 ad infinitum won't work without lending, what's not happening, nor will it under Bernanke's scheme to prevent it. Further, under the fractional reserve system, banks don't need credit to make loans. They do it by creating money out of thin air every time they issue one.
Thus, expect stagnation and more slowdown ahead, exacerbating existing problems, especially with bipartisan support for fiscal austerity at a time massive stimulus is needed. In addition, the Fed needs to put its money where our mouths are instead of handing it over to Wall Street.
Instead counterproductive policies are planned, Rosenberg saying, "It does not leave us with a very warm and fuzzy feeling." In other commentaries, he's expressed alarm, believing economic conditions describe depression, a conclusion he's repeated several times.
A Final Comment
On September 28, the US Census Bureau provided more evidence of economic trouble, reporting America's highest ever income gap. In 2009, median household income fell nearly 3% from $51,726 to $50,221, the second consecutive annual drop.
Moreover, among all developed nations, America has the highest income disparity, and it's showing up in record numbers needing Medicaid, food stamps, and emergency food help. In addition, higher levels of poverty, homelessness and other worrying signs show economic weakness, not strength.
Yet, with growing human depravation, bipartisan indifference cares only about serving wealth and privilege. Expect that attitude to harden post-election, leaving growing millions on their own, out of luck, and if new legislation passes as expected, eventually without Social Security and Medicare, once Wall Street bandits gets their hands on them.
On September 18, Obama explained it when he told the Congressional Black Caucus, "You didn't elect me to do what was popular. You elected me to do what was right," his hidden message meaning populism will be sacrificed for privilege. As a result, expect lots tougher times ahead because political leaders plan it - wrecking the American dream for business at the public's expense unless enough outrage erupts to stop it.
Listen to Lendman's cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.
Mr. Lendman's stories are republished in the Baltimore Chronicle with permission of the author.
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Baltimore News Network, Inc., sponsor of this web site, is a nonprofit organization and does not make political endorsements. The opinions expressed in stories posted on this web site are the authors' own.This story was published on October 6, 2010.