Jack Rabbit's Journal
Hometown: Sacramento Valley, California
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 45,719
Hometown: Sacramento Valley, California
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 45,719
- 2016 (17)
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What goes under the label of "free market" (Reaganomics, neoliberalism, supply-side, trickle-down) isn't capitalism; it's fraud. A healthy economy cannot be dominated by a parasitic industry like banking and finance. The whole scheme is to cycle and recycle debt. We need oil, so let's go to war and claim our oil under the Arabs' sand. Going to war is very, very expensive, so we go into debt. Get a college education, one goes into debt. Can't make ends meet with all that debt? Don't worry, the bank will extend your credit, and then extend it some more. Banking is a funny industry. Money in the bank may be an asset to you and me, but it's a liability to the bank; the bank has to pay you interest on your savings. On the other hand, your debt is an asset to the bank, because you're going to pay it back, someday. You may have to go into your savings, but if the the system starts to collapse, they may legally steal your savings first.
Isn't banking deregulation and modernization wonderful? There's no such thing a fraud. Fraud is legal, and if it's legal, then it isn't fraud, is it?
I'm not young and haven't been for a long time, but I certainly don't blame young people today for turning way from anything so decadent as the free market. This certainly isn't my Dad's capitalism.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Tue Apr 26, 2016, 09:23 PM (0 replies)
I belong to the party of the New Deal, progressive civil rights legislation and opposition to imperialist wars in Vietnam and Iraq.. I believe in an open, inclusive and just society. I believe in egalitarianism at home and abroad, and that slavery and imperialism are the two greatest crimes against humanity. I believe that human beings are made of flesh and blood, not legal documents, and that corporate personhood is a legal principle limited to business law, where its best use is to allow common people to take a corporation to court for damages to a small farmer's property, extortion, fraud and other acts of wrongdoing. Those are traditional Democratic values. The Third Way believes that government should be partner in crime to America's unworthy elites.
The establishment of the Democratic Party does not seem willing to give us a place at the table, although Bernie has won eight out of the last ten contests. It is the establishment that does not represent the values of the Democratic Party. A Democrat does not ship Americans' jobs overseas. A Democrat does not put Social Security or medicare on the bargaining table. A Democrat strives for universal healthcare for all Americans. A Democrat does not suggest that she would be willing to compromise on a woman's right to choose to terminate her pregnancy or anybody's right to vote. A Democrat puts an end to NSA spying, A Democrat does not embrace the criminal deregulation of Wall Street banks, does not take bribes for them and prosecutes the likes of Legs Dimon or Pretty Boy Lloyd.
The Republican party is dying of its own stubborn puritanism, its outdated crony capitalism and it vicious bigotry against about 65% of the American people. We have no long term fear of harm from that rotting body that is almost a corpse. What we fear is a faction of our own party that embraces corruption and crony capitalism and eschews democracy. A house divided against it slef cannot stand. Following this coming election, a decision must be made about the future of the Democratic Party.
If Hillary Clinton, Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Jon Cowan want to read us FDR Democrats out of the party, let us tell them that they do so at their own peril and let them know that they shall be responsible for any unpleasantness that rises from a permanent split. In the mean time, let us be prepared to rebuild the Democratic Party apart from this rotten shell that remains from the hostile takeover of the party by Al From and the Clintons. We shall make room for our future and the future of all Americans, with ot without the Third Way.
If this fate can be avoided, fine and well. That is up to the Third Way interlopers. If not, let us make the most of it.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Sun Apr 24, 2016, 12:54 AM (0 replies)
This was the subject of a thread in LBN yesterday, but the video should be seen.
Debbie Wasserman Schultz is full of baloney. Along with crooked banks and major fossil fuel polluters -- and let's not forget Debbie's pal, your friendly neighborhood payday lender -- let's invite private prison corporations and mercenary service corporations like
The American and world economy is in crisis because of entire industries that should be done away with. Private prisons, mercenaries and payday lenders have no more right to exist than an unregulated recreational drug industry or unregulated loan sharks, which is what a payday lender is and DWS wants to keep it that way. I'd rather have heroin legalized than private prisons or mercenary service companies as those are industries than strive on high crime rates and international tensions. A legalized dope industry would be easier to regulate and contain, while private prisons and mercenaries would demand criminals to fill their prisons and wars, wars and more wars and
Speaking of pointless wars, there are more reasons than anthropogenic climate change to want to do away with fossil fuels. The oil companies should stop lying about it; we know that knew about the dangers of climate change before the public did and immediately launched a PR campaign to deny there was any problem at all. We should make every effort to supplement and eventually supplant fossil fuels with wind and solar power in the next thirty years. If we had begun this process forty years ago, we'd done by now and the world would be a much better place with more blue sky and green grass.
Banking by its nature is a parasitic industry; it produces no wealth and only serves to move money around, which could be a useful enterprise when properly regulated. The notion that banks create wealth by making loans is nonsense in the best circumstances and dangerous sophistry when combined with quantitative easing (i.e., the Federal Reserve prints money and gives it to the banks at zero percent interest), as is the case now. Money is not wealth, it is a convenient medium of exchange and nothing more. Through quantitative easing, at least the Fed keep the bank from lending money it doesn't have (that would be fraud), but it doesn't mean that there is no word for what happens when that money, printed without regard to an increase in goods and services, goes into general circulation and that word is inflation. There is no question that Wall Street banks should be re-regulated by returning to the status quo ante prior to 1999 when the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act became law and, in addition, the banks broken up to reduce the likelihood that a failure of one too-big-to-fail financial institution will drag the rest of the economy down with it. If that doesn't look like an adequate solution, then we can always nationalize the financial industry, which might be the ultimate solution to any parasitic industry.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Sat Apr 16, 2016, 04:32 PM (28 replies)
FACT: Hillary Clinton and her husband, the President, were on the wrong side of banking deregulation.
FACT: Hillary Clinton and her husband, the President, were on the wrong side of free trade.
FACT: Hillary Clinton takes money from Wall Street banks on behalf of the Clinton Foundation, her presidential campaign and herself.
FACT: Hillary Clinton says she will not reinstate Glass-Steagall, the repealing of which was one of the worst features of banking deregulation. CONCLUSION: HC is still on the wrong side of banking deregulation.
FACT: Hillary Clinton, as Secretary of State, helped direct the negotiations of the the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
FACT: Hillary Clinton, as Secretary of State, pushed a free trade agreement with Panama, which greased the way for US Ponzi scheme managers and Hedge Fund managers to incorporate shell corporations through crooked lawyers in Panama for hiding assets.
FACT: Hillary Clinton used her position as Secretary of State to sell fracking to the world.
FACT: Hillary Clinton approved the sale of weapons to nations after receiving donations to the Clinton Foundation from the leaders of this nations, including Saudi Arabia.
CONCLUSION: Hillary Clinton is ethically and judgmentally unfit to be President of the United States.
Camp Weathervane can't complain that any of the above are "smears", as they are want to do, because everything above is either a fact or a conclusion derived from facts.
We have nothing to fear from the likes of Hillary Clinton. She had some awfully heavy baggage when she ran for president in 2008 with her poor judgment on the Frat Boy's Iraq War; she has even more baggage now.
She wants to go nuclear on Bernie, does she? Bring it on.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Wed Apr 6, 2016, 02:28 AM (4 replies)
Let's remember that. We're not in this to get this or that result out of 2016.
No matter who emerges in November as the president-elect, our work will not be done. It will be nice if it's Bernie; that will make our task easier in the short run. If not, we'll just have to work longer and harder in the short run.
The goals is to end neoliberalism, the false socioeconomic philosophy that the economic engine works best when government pampers the rich with tax cuts and deregulation because the are "job creators" and the masses are forced to live with austerity in bad times. Americans voted for that thirty-six years ago and it didn't work. Every president since then has made policy with the same neoliberal set of assumptions, and it still doesn't work. Neoliberalism has widened the income gap, shipped jobs overseas and given rise to what would called corporate crime except that the mad rush to deregulate everything virtually repealed laws against fraud.
Worse, neoliberalism posits a culture of corruption among the elites of business and government that make it very hard to purge. Few politicians aren't on the take and almost all corporate executives see that bribes paid out to politicians in the form of perfectly legal campaign contributions is just a cost of doing business. The shysters on the US Supreme Court say that there is no evidence that bribes paid out to politicians by corporate executives in the form of perfectly legal campaign contribution establishes a quid pro quo. Any honest and reasonable person would call that a crock of steer manure and simply assume that any politician receiving large amounts of money from corporate executives and board members in the form of perfectly legal campaign contributions -- or a perfectly legal large contribution to a family run charity foundation or perfectly legal exorbitant speaking fees -- is bought.
Some things were not changed by yesterday's election results. Neoliberalism is still an unsustainable socioeconomic model and Bernie Sanders is still the only presidential candidate seriously addressing what must be done about it. Senator Sanders has made it a theme of his campaign that a political revolution is what is needed to fix what is wrong with the current state of affairs. That what he says is still the truth didn't change yesterday, either.
We are still the man on the white horse we have been waiting for. Nobody else is. Those are not windmills before us, but monsters that must be subdued. Have courage. Ride forth boldly.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Wed Mar 16, 2016, 02:20 PM (0 replies)
In her position as chair of the DNC, she represents not only the political establishment, but the corporate establishment that has corrupted the political establishment. She is in her position for one and only one reason: to protect the establishment from a spreading insurgency that that may swallow Debbie Wasserman Schultz as early as tomorrow. Many of Democrats, who as democrats are tired of the DLC/Third Way sellout to big banks and the fundamental tenets of Reaganomics that decree that the profits of a multinational corporation are more important than the welfare of an American worker. We reject this proposition. We have always rejected this proposition. We can no longer pretend to tolerate that proposition.
The leadership of Debbie Wasserman Schultz has been a disaster for the Democratic Party. The loss os the United States Senate rests at her feet. She selected candidates fir the fidelity to the failed economic model pushed by presidents of both parties starting with Ronald Reagan and wondered why disaffected Democrats stayed home in droves. Under her leadership, the party ran candidates against vulnerable senate Republicans and lost every race.
In recent weeks, Debbie Wasserman Schultz has betrayed the heritage of Franklin Roosevelt by siding with payday lenders, who are nothing but loan sharks acting with the blessings of laws passed by a corrupt Congress, She is protecting a predatory industry that should not be permitted in a civilized society, and she does this for an industry that supports her financially.
This week, she has denied access to the DNC's VAN database to the primary opponents of incumbent Democrats in order to save her own hide from a primary opponent. In a year of insurgency, what gives Debbie Wasserman Schultz the right to lock in established incumbents like the? These establishment politicians, like Debbie Wasserman Schultz herself, often take money from industries who interests run counter to the health and welfare of the American people. Many of these establishment politicians are as corrupt as any Republican and richly deserve to be defeated.
If you live in the 23rd congressional district of Florida, currently represented by Debbie Wasserman Schultz, please vote tomorrow for Tim Canova and rid our party of this incompetent, corrupt and harmful leader.
This is our party, not Al From's, not Jon Cowan's and not Debbie Wasserman Schultz'. Let's take it back from the corrpupt corporate and political establishment.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Mon Mar 14, 2016, 08:21 PM (11 replies)
At least once a day, an apologist for establishment Democrats comes on DU to tell the progressives that there's nothing wrong with the Democratic Party or neoliberalism or a widening income gap or crooked Wall Street banks; and the we should sit down, shut up and vote for the corrupt candidates you "sensible" people choose for us and pretend we like being screwed.
How long do you really think that's going to last? How long do you really think we peons will play dumb for the benefit of corrupt politicians and their crooked paymasters like Legs Dimon and Pretty Boy Lloyd in an economy that gives us an illusion of prosperity as one bubble expands but always brings us back to a terrible reality when it bursts?
Let me try to express this in a way that has nothing to do with Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders or any of the Republican clowns still standing. The most consequential president in our lifetime, dwarfing all the others, was Ronald Reagan, and that is not a good thing. He is consequential because his administration (not Reagan himself, he never knew what he was doing) ushering in the era of neoliberalism. He'd be horrified to call it that, of course, but it goes by other names: supply-side economics, trickle-down economics, Reaganomics,etc. Lately, I've taken to calling it really fucked up economics. Whatever it's called, it is the Zeitgeist of the day since 1981. It presumes, falsely, that a deregulated market will work at least as well if not better than a government regulated market because the elites, being wise men or they would not be so wealthy, will make rational decisions and not try to take such an advantage over their rivals in the market because that would destroy the market that benefits them. And they would create jobs by reinvesting profits into their magical wealth creating corporations and everybody lives happily ever after.
A person who believes that probably believes in rainbows and unicorns. We've been waiting for trickle-down for three and half decades. If that were a workable scheme, we'd all be rich and happy by now. Instead, we have a situation where the middle class is shrinking and most new income goes to the corporate elites and stays there. It's like were trying to have capitalism without a middle class to buy the products generated in factories or on farms. A Marxist would call that a contradiction. I didn't go to an Ivy League university like the reprobates who run industry and government, but a mere state university, so I just call it unsustainable. Anyone with common sense would observe the situation, subject it to scientific analysis, and conclude that it just doesn't work.
Except for those who profit from really fucked economics, and I think they're just trying to hoodwink the rest of us.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Sun Feb 28, 2016, 04:15 PM (0 replies)
I don't hate Hillary Clinton, but I think she's irrelevant and that if she becomes president she'll still be irrelevant. That's because it is obvious to me and should be obvious to anyone who dwells in a "reality based" community that Hillary takes money from oligarchs to maintain the status quo. By definition, "Hillary Cinton will maintain the status quo" means that there will be no dramatic changes during her administration.
At a time when the income gap is widening and the middle class is growing smaller, maintaining the status quo is not a winning platform. As fall as I can tell, Bernie Sanders is the only candidate for the presidential nomination of a major political party running on a platform other that one. That's why it seems to me that the pragmatic thing to is support him.
If you think Hillary is taking money from the big banks and Big Pharma and the mother frackers today so she can stab them all in the back after January 20, then I'd like to know which of us believes in rainbows and unicorns. Anyone who believes such a thing is terribly naive.
I have said that I will vote for Mrs. Clinton if she is the nominee, although I confess that doing otherwise crosses my mind at least twice a week. I have also said that regardless of who is the next president, I will hit the streets next year railing against the neoliberal policy that Mrs. Clinton and all the Republican candidates embrace. The abandonment of an unjust and unsustainable socioeconomic paradigm that became the predominant policy paradigm with the election of Reagan is long overdue.
How's that for youthful idealism? Frankly, I think I'm a grumpy, cynical old man at age 64.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Thu Feb 25, 2016, 05:30 PM (0 replies)
We Sandernistas see something fundamentally wrong with the American political system (i.e., "it's broken"). Democrats, and coincidentally Democrats from the corporatist wing of the party, gladly take money from Big Banking, Big Pharma, Big Oil, Big Defense, etc., and go out and vote for their interests on the House or Senate floor. Before they do that, they make sure their asses are covered along with their benefactors' asses and pass a law that distinguishes a campaign contribution from bribe. That's very important, mostly because our broken system wouldn't work without making that distinction. Did I just say that a broken system works? How does that happen? Well, making a distinction without a difference is one way.
For us, we are involved in this process to fix what's wrong with it. Over at Camp Weathervane, they seem to think that only Republicans are corrupt and any Democrat who takes money from banksters just can't wait to get into office and stab them in the back. Just like Bill Clinton did when he signed banking deregulation, just like Barack Obama did when he appointed an attorney general who treated Legs Dimon and Pretty Boy Lloyd with kid gloves instead sending them to prison where they belong.
This seems to be a good place to remind everyone that a study from Princeton University concludes that American is now an oligarchy and not a democracy. The politicians we vote for to represent us in legislative bodies at all level listen not to the voters b the donors who contribute bribes to their re-election campaigns. That is a succinct description of how the American political is broken. Until we change it, it's broken.
There is a difference between Republicans and Democrats, but it's not a significant difference at this moment in history. Democrats are more likely to support marriage equality or abortion rights or to decry a cop who blows away a black teenager because . . . well, just because. President Hillary Clinton can fix those problems, but if she doesn't take on Wall Street banks then American will almost certainly be worse off when she leaves office than it is today. The gay couple that gets married today won't think it's as much of a blessing if they can never afford a house together. The woman who gets 100 cents for every dollar a man with a similar job descriptions gets won't really care if her job and the man's are shipped to China.
However, the residents of DU's Camp Weathervane won't be concerned when the income gap widens under President Hillary Clinton because they will still the election of 2016 as a great success as long as she wins in the end. And that's part of the problem. For them, the election is an end. For us, it's just one of many events that will affect the outcome of the struggle to restore American democracy from its destruction at the hands of corrupt corporate oligarchs and their political stooges. Like their candidate, the corporate wing of the Democratic Party is only concerned about the next election. We are concerned about Americans' long term future. We will fight on, regardless of what transpires between now and November, long after to November to right the wrongs that have bee visited upon by every president starting with Reagan and the voodoo economics that each and every one of them regardless of party (yes, you read that right) has advanced.
We certainly cannot depend on our elected representatives, ordinary politicians who are as only worried about keeping their jobs as the rest of us. They're corrupt and listen to their donors, not to us. The prescription to change the system and restore democracy will involve direct action. I would like to emphasize that our foes are the oligarchs and not their political stooges. Once the oligarchs are defeated, all the corrupt politicians who have too little imagination to contemplate a world where they don't just take money from a Wall Street fraud monger or an industrial polluter and do as they say won't know what to do. Perhaps they'll just go away and spend more time with their families. That will be best for all concerned.
No, people. We are the Knights on white horses for whom we have been waiting. Now charge those monsters. You'll discover that they're only paper tigers and windmills.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Sun Feb 21, 2016, 06:06 PM (0 replies)
For those of limited vision, whether in Camp Weathervane or even here, it looks grim for our cause tonight. However, nothing could be further from the truth.
Even if Bernie is not the next President of the United States, our fight will go on and it must go on. Mrs. Clinton has already committed herself to a policies based on economic theories that for the last three and a half decades have proven unsustainable and an abject failure. It has brought us lost jobs, lost opportunities, pointless wars and a widening income gap. More of the same policies and programs will bring only more of the same results. Although nothing would be more pleasant than to be proven wrong about this, should Mrs. Clinton win, there is no reason to expect her to accomplish anything significant as president.
For us, this is not an election, but a revolution. Our task is not complete until we have put an end to neoliberalism, the oligarchs are in prison and their political stooges of whatever party are defeated at the polls. We must continue until American democracy is restored. That is a task that may take more than one an election cycle. Indeed, as I am an old man, I may not see the end of it. That is no reason for me, or anyone else here, to give up.
Let us resolve to move forward with our long term goals into the future, regardless of what the next few weeks may bring or of how dark the years ahead may look.
Power to the people. Forever feel the Bern.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Sun Feb 21, 2016, 12:27 AM (2 replies)