Monthly Archives: October 2011

Credit Union Flap May Reveal Goldman Sachs Is Bullying Community Banks

The Raw Story article Credit union flap may reveal Goldman Sachs is bullying community banks provides a link to the video below.

When it was announced recently that Goldman Sachs had withdrawn its sponsorship of the small community bank at which Occupy Wall Street had set up an account for its donations, it appeared to be merely a petty act of vindictiveness.

According to investigative reporter Greg Palast, however, the motivations go much deeper and may involve that Goldman Sachs is misusing TARP bailout funds as a “political weapon” to bully smaller banks.

Republicans Rush To Defend Keynesian Economic Policy

The story Republicans Cry Uncle On Spending … When Cuts Hit Home on Talking Points Memo starts with the following paragraphs:

It took months of fighting — the threat of a government shutdown, the graver threat of a default on the national debt, and now a new threat of major, automatic cuts to Medicare and defense programs — but Congress’ deficit obsession has finally exposed the rarest of all species: Republican Keynesians.

With just a under a month until the deficit Super Committee must recommend policies that cut the 10 year deficit by $1.2 trillion, members of the Republican party — the same party that’s been on the war path for deep spending cuts, and that decries President Obama’s “failed stimulus” — are making uncharacteristic arguments against slashing spending. Trim too much, too quickly, they warn, and people will lose their jobs!

Call them Defense Keynesians — GOP members who represent defense interests, veterans, service members, contractors, and others whose livelihoods would be impacted by deep cuts to defense spending. They don’t want the Super Committee to cut much more, if any, from defense, and they certainly don’t want to pull the so-called “trigger” which would cut defense across the board by about $600 billion starting in 2013, if the panel gridlocks.

They laughed at the flippant comment that John Maynard Keynes is reported to have made that if you couldn’t find anything better to spend stimulus money on, you could keep people employed by just having them dig holes and then fill them up again.  What is it when you spend billions of dollars to employ people to build bombs and guns?  Don’t they just dig holes?  Then you hire people to repair what the others you hired blew up.

There must be some better way to spend the money.  What if you didn’t hire people to blow things up, but put those people to work fixing infrastructure?  Also the people you used to have to hire to fix what was blown up could instead work on building new things.

Instead of destroying future generations, you could  keep the teachers employed teaching our next generation of innovators and builders.

Why We Love Elizabeth Warren

I cannot understand why the Republicans would want to run this video ad.

So they have figured out just what it is about Elizabeth Warren that makes us want her for our Senator so much.

You wouldn’t think they would want to let any more people know that haven’t already figured this out.

More evidence, if you needed it, that the Republicans are completely out of touch. They think there is still a market for their snake oil remedies.

It’s funny how the repeated mention of Socialism by modern day Republicans has finally made me want to read more about it. So far I have found that the Republican party of Abe Lincoln was founded on socialist ideas by avowed socialists.

I have just finished reading Chapter Two “A Broader Patriotism”: Thomas Paine and the Promise of Red Republicanism from the book The “S” Word: A short history of an American tradition… Socialism. I guess they don’t call them red states for nothing.

We in Massachusetts have tried “Bambi” aka Scott Brown. We are tired of the caught in the headlights look. Bring on the “Matriatch of Mayhem”.

Olbermann: Oakland mayor must fire police chief or resign

The Raw Story article Olbermann: Oakland mayor must fire police chief or resign provides a little background for the included video below and the transcript I quote below that..

“But if one night a group of peaceable protesters exercising the rights given to them in the Constitution — and not rights made up by the cops, for the cops, like lawful command and imminent threat — if they are attacked with tear gas and rubber bullets, and the mayor’s only comments are to commend the police chief for a ‘generally peaceful resolution to the situation’ and after that claim ‘democracy is messy’ after the unprovoked actions of those police horrify a nation, she is endorsing and assuming for herself the responsibility for whatever havoc the out of control police officers have wrought.”

War Veteran Wounded By Police At Occupy Oakland is has a petition campaign over the War Veteran Wounded By Police At Occupy Oakland, Stun Grenade Thrown At Folks Helping Him.

They introduced the video below with the following explanation:

Scott Olsen, a protester who’s done two tours of duty in Iraq and is now involved in Veterans For Peace, was critically wounded during an Oakland police raid by police projectiles. When people tried to help him, an officer lobbed a flash bang grenade right into their group. Olsen is currently hospitalized with serious injuries and is reported to be in critical condition.

The text of the petition that you can sign at is as follows:

Mayor Quan: We are outraged by your decision to have Occupy Oakland’s peaceful, lawful and inspiring assembly raided. We denounce police intimidation, harassment, and incarceration of peaceful protesters.

We call on you to drop all the charges against these community leaders, to release them immediately, and to allow for the restoration of the encampment.

I first red the news of this veteran’s fate on The Raw Story web site article Marine veteran’s skull fractured by police projectile at ‘Occupy Oakland’ protest.

To underdstand the need for the lethal violence of the police, you can read the story Mayor Quan issues statement about Occupy Oakland raid.

In part she said:

Many Oaklanders support the goals of the national Occupy Wall Street movement. We maintained daily communication with the protest0rs in Oakland.

However, over the last week it was apparent that neither the demonstrators nor the City could maintain safe or sanitary conditions, or control the ongoing vandalism. Frank Ogawa Plaza will continue to be open as a free speech area from 6 am to 10 pm.

In order to maintain safe and sanitary conditions is killing a demonstrator justified? Exactly what kind of vandalism does she imagine? Enough to kill over? Maybe this is like what we heard about the Viet Nam war where our Army had to destroy villages in order to save them.

Having participated in some of the Activities of Occupy Boston and Occupy Worcester, I know that the demonstrators were fully aware of what might be the reaction of the power structure they were challenging. The fact that they were willing to continue in the face of this knowledge is a tribute to their courage. The irony of a Marine Vet surviving several tours of duty in Iraq only to have his skull fractured while petitioning his own government for redress of grievances is almost beyond belief.

Cain’s Plan: Minimum Wage Earners Pay 460 Times More Taxes than Millionaires

Kyle Linzer explains in Cain’s Plan: Minimum Wage Earners Pay 460 Times More Taxes than Millionaires how he makes his calculations.

He has to define the tax rate he is using as tax rate on their income after necessities are paid.  I always have thought of that as the fairest way to assess taxes if you could find a way to define necessities.

His pie charts from the extreme ends of the earnings spectrum give you the best summary along with a paragraph close to the end of the article.

So spending on necessities $1,000 per month for someone earning minimum wage, $2,500 per month for the average American, and $15,080 per month for someone earning $1,000,000 per year, paying taxes at a flat rate of 9%, the effective tax rate is 25% for the poorest Americans, 9% for the average Americans, and 1% for the wealthy.