Jack Rabbit's Journal
Hometown: Sacramento Valley, California
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 41,696
Hometown: Sacramento Valley, California
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 41,696
You are basing you assertion that Nacchio is crooked by citing a conviction engineered by the Bush Administration Justice Department that happened after he refused to allow the NSA to get information about his customers for nefarious purposes.
Remember, please, that the Bushies played hardball, didn't play fair and, for them, the Constitution was just a piece of paper -- as in toilet paper. This was a Justice Department that fired US Attorneys who did not pursue trumped up charges against Democrats and kept on those that did. It was that Justice Department that engineered the railroading of Don Siegelman. That's only the most high profile case of many.
I resent your characterization of "Firebaggers" hating CEOs indiscriminately "unless those CEOs are crooks." I suppose you think Pretty Boy Lloyd and Legs Dimon are upright, outstanding citizens. I suppose you think Dave and Charlie Koch are positive influences on American politics. When I talk about CEOs, I'm usually taking about the Wall Street Bankers who crashed the world economy, were bailed out by the taxpayers and haven't changed the way they do business or right wing billionaires who want to destroy American democracy. That covers a quite a few more people than the aforementioned, but they are giving all business people, even honest ones, a bad name. If we can bring capitalism back to a state where it is regulated to prevent capitalists from abusing to their employees, polluting the environment, defrauding their customers or buying the people's representatives in state or federal governments, then I'll be very happy. Our problem is simply that we do not have a functioning economic system of any kind. If you want to know what an unregulated free market looks like, ask the kid on the corner dealing dope or his customers about it.
Perhaps Nacchio really belongs in the slammer, but I wouldn't take the result of a case of a man who crossed the Bushies and was prosecuted by a Bush-appointed US Attorney who survived the Frat Boy's mid-term purge at face value. Anyone who would has no claim to being a member of any reality based community.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Sat Apr 5, 2014, 03:50 PM (0 replies)
The former chief prosecutor at DOJ who made the decision not to prosecute is now making millions with an infamous Wall Street firm. The Attorney General makes lame excuses to a Senate Committee for not prosecuting Wall Street criminals, seeking only civil actions with relatively light fines. The government isn't working for us. It's been bought by bankers and industrialists.
The administration may as well be not standing between us and the Wall Street criminals. If this is a facade, it's made of papier-mâché. It creates only an illusion of justice because it is only an illusion of a government.
Wall Street banks are not too big to fail. They're too big for their breeches. The banks and industrialists own all three branches of the government and commit mortgage fraud with impunity. It's time for direct action against the criminals. Get your torches and pitchforks and go to the Bastille on Wall Street. Tear it down, brick by brick. Build a better world in its place.
It's time for a mass campaign of civil disobedience directed not at government, but at finance and industry. Organize! Agitate! Don't listen to their propaganda. They say these policies will create jobs. Horsepucky! After thirty years of Reaganomics, there is only one new job for every three unemployed workers. Heckovajob, job creators!
To the so-called job creators and Wall Street criminals: You've thrown us out of work and now rob us of everything we've earned. We're going to shut you down. We're going find ways around your economy, create our own and lock you out of it. We won't pay taxes to support the government you've taken from us. We won't patronize your banks or buy the products, mostly unnecessary, you make with cheap labor in China. We'll even, if necessary, create our our currency and let you keep the dollars that your own acts of "quantitative easing" are undermining as we speak. You can keep it and we'll let you suffer the hyperinflation that today's irresponsible fiscal policies are making. If you get your servile villains in Congress to pass laws against us, we'll ignore them. What part of civil disobedience do you not understand? You are finished!
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Fri Mar 28, 2014, 12:48 PM (1 replies)
"Snake oil salesman" was an often-used variant.
So, what does that make me? It can't make me a racist, since my ancestors and Mr. Reagan's came from pretty much the same places: north of the Alps and west of the Rhine, to include the British isles.
President Obama is not above criticism. I don't like the trade deals he's pushing one bit, I don't like NSA spying, I don't like drone strikes, I don't like the kid glove treatment his justice department has given to Wall Street criminals and I think his administration has been in some ways as opaque as his predecessor's, not what would be expected of one who campaigned on a platform of transparency and accountability.
I believe that the above is a fair statement, not at all like something out of the mouth of Darrell Issa, a partisan hack, or Steve King, a partisan hack who also really is a racist. Unlike some Tea Party congressman who can't speak for sixty seconds without impugning the President's religion, birth place, patriotism or without bringing up a manufactured scandal, I try to keep the criticism fair and free of personal references to Mr. Obama. Calling him a "used car salesman" (I didn't see that post and don't have any idea who wrote it) is pushing it and is something that really should be toned down. However, it isn't necessarily racist.
In addition to Democrats, this website also promotes democratic (with a small d) values. To that end, what should be unacceptable on this website is an attempt to close down open discussion with nonsense like a blanket charge of racism against those with an opposing point of view.
Criticism of the President's actions should be in context and directed at the specific policy, program or proposal. One should explain what is wrong with the what the President is doing, not with the President himself.
I have found the post, that being an OP from Will Pitt. Few DUers would ever suspect Will of being a racist. I have been on DU almost as long as Will, since 2001, so I speak with some authority. Perhaps ProSense knows something about Will that I don't, but I think this is nonsense.
This context of the post is a ruling Mr. and Mrs. Pitt (who suffers MS) got from their ACA provider rejecting coverage for medication under the ACA. I think I would be upset over that, too, and, furthermore, that I and most others would not be at all charitable toward those we hold responsible, rightly or wrongly, under similar circumstances. I suspect Will of being a grieved husband wondering what to do next, but not of being a racist. If the Pitts have no recourse, then I think we can all agree that this is something about the ACA that needs fixed. Given that, it would seem that the notion that Will is a racist who shouldn't be posting at DU is something more to be expected of a rank demagogue pushing an ideological agenda than a cool, rational poster at DU. It's just nonsense.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Thu Mar 27, 2014, 03:22 PM (2 replies)
I don't mean just fast tracking this thing, either. It would be an act of treason to approve this deal. I certainly would not want to go down in history as the President who negotiated and signed away the government's ability to regulate commerce and assure product and occupational safety for the sake of a presumed right of corporations to profits.
Right now, President Obama's signature work is the Affordable Care Act, but under the TPP it would be possible for Health Insurance Companies to do an end run around the US Government and take the United States to a commission set up by this agreement to force the taxpayers to fork over to health insurance companies a fine to compensate for lost profits. Does this sound undemocratic? That's exactly what it is. There's a reason the TPP was negotiated in secret. Government of the people, for the people and by the people will parish from the earth.
Perhaps this is what corporate whores like Ted Cruz and Paul Ryan mean when the say that Obamacare will cost the taxpayer billions. The CBO can refute everything they say now, but the CBO isn't factoring in the consequences of approving the TPP and making CEOs as powerful in our time as the landed aristocracy was before the French Revolution and subsequent events up to the final collapse of empires in the twentieth century.
It's time to stand up for democracy and say no to corporatism. Grab you torches and pitchforks, everyone. This is the most serious threat to freedom and democracy since the failure of the French Revolution after Napoleon's coup d'etat in 1799 or the re-imposition by the reactionay Congress of Vienna of the Bourbon dynasty on the people of France after Waterloo. We must be resolved not to obey corporate tyranny. We must overthrow it before it takes root.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Sat Feb 15, 2014, 05:49 PM (0 replies)
We still remember energy deregulation here. Who was to blame? Corporate whores in the state legislature. Today, the GOP doesn't hold enough seats in either house the state legislature to sustain a gubernatorial veto by themselves. If corporate big shots come to Sacramento looking for whore in the state legislature, they have to buy a Democrat. The Koch brothers don't come to these parts looking for some too often.
The thought for the day is that capitalism really wasn't such a bad thing back in the days when it existed, before it was replaced by corporate fascism, something that goes hand-in-hand with that dreaded institutional disease, corporate elephantiasis. Today, it easier for corporations suffering from elephantiasis to strangle upstart competition in the crib than compete with it. Without competition, corporations do nothing that justifies their existence, like innovate and keep their prices reasonable. There was a time, before corporate elephantiasis became a pandemic, that corporations would have been tripping over each other to solve environmental problems. Now, they deny there is a problem ("climate change is a hoax, so is peak oil and America only needs to tap its own energy resources to become energy independent forever"). This followed a period where the problem was minimized. Remember when Donald Hodel, a corporate whore who became both Secretary of Energy and Secretary of the Interior in the eighties? He said the solution to global warming was more sunscreen and hats with broader brims. Remember that matinee idol who became a corporate whore who appointed Mr. Hodel Secretary of Energy in 1982 and Secretary of the Interior in 1985. Yeah, that's right, him. The Sally Stanford of corporate whores. Remember when, while successfully running for President in 1980, he said that trees cause more pollution than automobiles?
Now the elephantiasis sufferers' favorite corporate whore is Jim Inhofe. He says "Problem? What problem? Environmental pollution is a scientific impossibility." Of course, Inhofe not only disbelieves climate science, but he doesn't believe in evolution, either. He's got a better reason not to believe in evolution than most people who don't. After two or three million years of human evolution, Inhofe is still an ape.
Another favorite corporate whore is Mitch McConnell. Like Inhofe and many other corporate whores, he can be found in the House of the Senate. Unlike Inhofe, McConnell is a firm believer in evolution. He not only believes that man evolved from a more primitive animal that also became monkeys, chimpanzees and gorillas, but he thinks we're still evolving. He says that corporations are people. Not only are corporations people, but those that suffer from corporate elephantiasis are the highest form of human being yet evolved. A real Nietzschean Übermensch. They should have rights that we mere homo sapiens don't. Like the right to rule over the rest of us and the right to collect the wages on our labor for us, because they are wiser and would know better how to use our money than we do. McConnell is consulting the scientists at a Koch funded think tank to understand how, if corporations with elephantiasis are such smart people, how they crashed the world economy in 2008.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Thu Feb 13, 2014, 04:59 PM (1 replies)
If the last fifty years demonstrate anything, it is that the third way program is a failure. Deregulation, austerity and a government catering to the whims of the rich, to include tax cuts, brought on the world wide economic collapse of 2008, from which we are still suffering mainly because the trends of Reagan/Bush/Clintion/Frat Boy have not been adequately reversed.
First, we must revoke the Bush tax cuts on the wealthy. They don't need the extra cash and, after mismanaging the world economy, they certainly don't deserve it. Whoever said these people are rich because they're smarter than the rest of us must be one of their paid stooges. It is difficult to believe that if the common autoworker was asked to design a car that he would like to drive to work that it wouldn't look anything like an SUV. But that is what they auto executives foisted on the American consumer. Instead of Henry Ford's "America can have any color car it wants, as long as it's black," the auto executives of the late twentieth century proclaimed that America could have any kind of car it wanted, as long as it guzzled gas. Then they wondered why we fell in love with Japanese cars. It shouldn't have taken an Ivy League-educated scion of America's best families to figure out what was going on, but they were the only ones couldn't figure it out. We should get our money back. Tax 'em. Get the money out of their pockets and put it to better use, like building schools and roads like we used to do. That's better than bribing politicians or putting billions into public relations to convince Americans that climate change is a hoax.
Second, we need to phase out fossil fuels and replace them with renewable energy. Let the oil executives and the coal barons whine. They've had their way long enough, and all we have to show for it is dirty air and undrinkable water. Pretty soon, we'll have even more undrinkable water, right after the polar ice caps melt.
Third, we need to re-regulate industry and the financial markets. We've had decades of deregulation and the only thing it's proved is that there is no such thing self-policing markets. All the bankers and industrialists want is more freedom to steal our savings, cut our wages and pollute the environment. I don't know who they think is going to buy their useless, tacky products after they've reduced the human race to serfdom. Am I the only one who thinks there's something wrong with not paying workers adequate wages, getting them to go on public assistance to make ends meet and then electing politicians who will cut or eliminate that same public assistance, like Mr. Cowan suggests?
Let's look at some realities that Mr. Cowan doesn't see. We don't have too big to fail banks and industries; what we have is billionaires too big for their breeches. We don't have a problem with funding the social safety net, we have a problem subsidizing unsustainable businesses.
Finally, I see no reason to raise a white flag and meekly approve the TPP/TTIP. This is no time to give up on democracy. Why? Because the common man is one hell of a lot smarter than the common billionaire or a corporate shill like Mr. Cowan, that's why.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Wed Feb 12, 2014, 03:42 AM (5 replies)
. . . Karl Rove is a real professional. Of course, his profession makes him an occupational liar. For lurking Freepers who think I'm just being partisan, so is James Carville. In addition to political campaign consultants, who are just a special class of public relations agents, prime examples of occupational liars are salesmen, lawyers and politicians (who, perhaps not coincidentally, usually start out as lawyers).
The point is that the Rover is an exceptionally good occupational liar, or EGOL. After all, he made Bush the Frat Boy into an attractive enough candidate to get him within stealing distance of two national elections. That was no easy task.
The first part of being an EGOL is to know what sells and what's an what doesn't. The Monica Lewinsky caper was never a good selling point in the first place. How many of us knew that President Clinton (another EGOL) was just asking for trouble when he said "I didn't have sex with that woman" instead of "On the advise of an attorney, I have nothing to say about that topic"? The problem with the matter of Mr. Clinton and she and his fellow consenting adult, Ms. Lewinsky, did together, was that nobody cared except ESAPPs (exceptionally stupid and partisan politicians). Fifteen years later, the only people who still care are ESAPPs like Senator Paul.
Another reason the Lewinsky caper doesn't sell is that there are better examples of politicians who don't level with the American people than Bill Clinton or even Chris Christie. For example, Richard ("I am not a crook") Nixon, George W. (Saddam has Weapons of Mass Destruction) Bush and his sidekick, former Vice Premier Cheney were much bigger liars than Clinton, and lied about matters of greater consequence than a tacky blow job.
What are the Republicans to do in 2016? One might think that they could point to President Obama. but they can't do that. It's not that President Obama hasn't lied to us. This is the same president who tells us that mass surveillance of American citizens saves lives and isn't a violation of the Fourth Amendment and that the TPP and TTIP will create jobs. Unfortunately, any Republican president will say the same thing and it won't be any more truthful than saying he threw a silver dollar across the Potomac River. All they can do is holler "Benghazi," but that is even less attractive as a selling point that what down in the Oval Office closet in the nineties. Well, no one ever accused Darrell Issa of being an EGOL. It's a rare man who can be both an EGOL and an ESAPP at the same time.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Tue Feb 11, 2014, 03:16 PM (0 replies)
I'm opposed to intervention in Syria for basically the reasons you are. Wars have never been fought because some king was so bad in bed that couldn't keep his wife satisfied and she ran off with somebody else and so he went to war to get her back. Modern archeology is uncovering evidence that there was a Trojan War, but it was fought over control of trade routes. The Mycenaeans simply thought the Trojans were an unnecessary middle man by extracting tolls from Mycenaean ships that strayed too close to Troy on their way to the Dardanelles.
What would you have said to Menelaus if you were a the ruler of another Mycenaean city if he came to you with a proposal to go to war over Helen's unfaithfulness? I don't know about you, but I would have said something like, "Get fucked, buddy. I don't care if you've got Agamemnon at your back, that fatheaded brother of yours is too big for his breaches, anyway. If you can't control your wife, that's your problem. If Agamemnon wants to make it his business, that's his choice. I'll keep my army here, thank you, in order to keep that thuggish brother of yours from meddling in my business."
I would have said the same thing to Menelaus if I were the King of Ithaca or a peasant living just outside of Sparta, where Menelaus was King. Poor Helen! She had such poor taste in men. She marries Menelaus and runs away with Paris. What is it about her that she was attracted to such losers?
Now, a typical American of the 21st century spends all day working for the Man, comes home dead on his feet and doesn't want to be bothered with what's being reported on the evening news. Even if it's a real news program that leaves him relatively informed instead of some video fish wrap that tells more than he needs to know about Paris Hilton's driving record or Kim Kardashian's latest whirlwind romance, he'd rather watch Dancing with the Stars or America's Got Talent. Still, he's vaguely informed about what's going on and knows that the CEO of the corporation for which he works is scheming to steal his retirement fund, Bush lied the country into a war against Iraq and that Obama has been less than candid about the NSA spying on us and can't seem to appoint anybody to his economic team who isn't a Wall Street crook (speaking of Wall Street crooks, such a deal they have for the CEO concerning high yield investments of the proceeds he will receive from stealing our hero's retirement fund).
In short, he knows enough not to trust his boss or the government. So, what do you suppose his initial reaction to being told we have to bomb Syria in order to protect Syrian civilians from being murdered by their brutal dictator? "I'm war weary," perhaps? Or maybe, "I'm tired of being lied to by one President or another"?
Don't be so dismissive of this fellow. He's aware his been screwed over again and again and is being screwed over yet again, right now. That's what's different. Like you, I'm old enough to remember the Tonkin Gulf "incident." It took almost four years for most of the population to figure out that the war against Vietnam was justified by a pack of lies and that the rosy reports of progress in winning the hearts and minds of Vietnamese peasants were a pack of lies. In the case of Iraq, this fellow may have been apprehensive about the idea of going to war against Saddam, but in the end he trusted the Man and only regretted trusting him later. This time, he's asking questions even before the Man takes action. That's a good thing, don't you think? The man might get his way and bomb Syria, but he won't be able to do any more. Our hero is waking up. He doesn't want to hear all the hooey about humanitarian intervention or credibility or honor, Most of all, he doesn't want to see his children or grandchildren to fight an imperialist war that will not benefit him or them, but will only benefit his CEO who wants to steal our hero's retirement fund and the Wall Street bankers waiting to swindle the CEO out of that.
Our hero is waking up. This time, it really is morning in America.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Sat Sep 7, 2013, 03:08 PM (1 replies)
Let me remind people that Obama will not be on any ballot ever again, unless he tries to get his old Senate seat back in Illinois.
There are some in his administration I hope will never be employed by the government ever again. Larry Summers, for example, starting right now. I hope I will never have to vote for Diane Feinstein again. If she runs for re-election in 2018, at the age of 85, I can see myself doing what I did in 1980 -- standing in the voting booth, contemplating whether I should vote for Carter, who I thought had a disastrous record over four years in office, or for John Anderson, who didn't have a snowball's chance in hell of winning (You-Know-Who, the third-rate matinee idol, was out of the question).
OK, we couldn't depend on Obama to do what he at least implicitly and often explicitly promised. All we can do now is protest him in meek and abject ways. It's not much for me to say I won't buy his memoirs, since I haven't bought a book by any former president since The Vantage Point by Lyndon Johnson. I concluded the book was full of self-serving crap. Perusing over copies of other presidential memoirs after that, I came to the same conclusion about each one in succession.
Let's face it: there is no Republican in Congress, either house, who deserves re-election. There is no Republican governor elected in 2010 who deserves re-election in 2014. It would be ridiculous to believe the party of the Frat Boy and the Big Dick are going to protect our civil liberties because Obama didn't. After all, they're the bastards who violated them in the first place. The party of the Iraq War is not going to end drone strikes -- unless they can send in the Marines and torture any one in an invaded oil rich country who objects to US imperialism. Oh, and the economy? The architects of deregulation at least wouldn't consider Larry Summers for any responsible position, would they? No, but Phil Gramm will be Treasury Secretary again.
Beating the Republicans should be easy, if they didn't pass so many racist voter ID requirements. Apart from that, we also have a slough of Democrats who don't deserve re-election, either. Max Baucus (or is it Bought-kus?), who when the Senate Banking Committee held hearings prior to writing the Affordable Care Act didn't want to hear anything about a public option, certainly deserves no support for making it a weaker bill than it could have been or perhaps needed to be.
I voted for Obama in 2008 because I believed in him. I voted for Obama in 2012 because I wasn't feeling good about America's chances of surviving and knew that it wouldn't survive having a vulture capitalist in the White House. Right now, I am not optimistic that it will survive Obama.
Stop waiting for that man on the white horse to lead us to the promised land. There is no promised land and that man on the white horse is part of the problem. Give him power, and he'll just want more. For him, it's about how much power he can get and how he can keep it, even if he has to betray those who helped him to get it.
Presient Obama is not without his achievements. On the plus side: he ended the war against Iraq; will end the war in Afghanistan, although taking more time to do so than necessary; killed Osama bin Laden, the man responsible for the September 11 attacks; succeeded in getting Congress to pass the Affordable Care Act, although it is much weaker than it could have been; signed the Lilly Ledbetter Act into law; and he made a series of maneuvers that has resulted in giant steps toward the goal of equality for gay and lesbian Americans. While Guantánamo remains open, the President wants to close it and has been prevented from doing so by obstinate congressional Republicans who will be judged even more harshly by history than President Obama for what follows.
On the other hand, there is the minus side: Obama has aided and abetted the war criminals from the Bush junta in escaping justice; he has committed war crimes in his own right though the careless use of predator drones against suspected terrorists without regard to collateral damage (i.e., the deaths of noncombatants); he has continued the mass surveillance of private communications of American citizens begun under the Bush junta with only cosmetic "reforms"; he has signed into law a measure that allows him to abrogate any person's right to due process of law; he has punished individuals for exposing war crimes, acts of terror and torture while acting in the official capacity as agents of the United States, while taking no action against or even rewarding those whose crimes were exposed; he has aided and abetted the Wall Street criminals who crashed the world economy not only in escaping justice but in gaining greater power over the lives of common people whose trust they betrayed than they had before; he has sent negotiators to secret meetings aimed at agreeing on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a trade deal that will end the national sovereignty of any nation foolish enough to sign it and set up a court to levy fines against any signatory nation that fails to bring its laws into compliance with TPP standards in matters concerning consumer safety, labor rights and environmental protection.
It remains to be seen whether the President will push Congress to approve the TPP or to approve himself the Keystone Pipeline, both of which would also count on the minus side.
Obama isn't the one one we were waiting for. We have to take up that mantle ourselves.
A few goals for a mass movement:
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Mon Aug 26, 2013, 07:56 PM (5 replies)
Talking about reforming the surveillance state is simply absurd. The War on Terror was and continues to be as phoney as a three dollar bill. As many have observed, this kind of massive surveillance didn't save any lives in Boston this Spring. That is not what it is about. It is more effectively used as as early warning radar system against popular dissent, something that the government and its corporate masters will need in an era of "free" trade agreements such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The threat to democracy and national sovereignty posed by the TPP must be accompanied by wide spread surveillance and control of the population or the "free" trade regime will fail under the weight of mass resistance.
It is in our best interests to make sure that we can resist a world wide corporate totalitarianism. Accordingly, mass surveillance cannot be reformed. These programs must be dismantled.
Posted by Jack Rabbit | Sat Aug 10, 2013, 12:34 PM (3 replies)