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Greed is Not Good: The Ronald Reagan Mantra is Dead

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Joanne98 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-23-09 01:37 PM
Original message
Greed is Not Good: The Ronald Reagan Mantra is Dead

The true face of the Republican mantra of "Greed is Good" has finally been seen for what it really is by the general public. When Republican President Ronald Reagan famously said "Greed is Good" the public drank the cool-aid whole-heartedly. The Republican Party launched a 20-year campaign to undermine government and replace non-profit government services with for-profit free market business. Anti-trust laws were weakened and regulations on the financial and banking sector were removed. These efforts can now be directly linked to our current financial crisis that ran amok because the driving principle of greed was left unchecked.

Public outrage boiled over this week when it was revealed that AIG bonuses were funded by us the taxpayers in the form of bailout money. When CEOs and upper management are making salaries that are 400 times that of their workers and after running their company into the ground and losing 98% of the stock value and 156 billion in market capitalization the general public has every reason to be outraged. That someone would then expect to get multi-million dollar bonuses after a performance like this and hide behind what they claim are unbreakable legal contracts is unconscionable. A contract that by the way would have been broken or worthless had AIG gone into bankruptcy prior to not being bailed out with funds from us the taxpayers.

Over the past decade we have seen many Republican politicians devoutly go to church every week in an overtly public display and claim God directs their every move in public life. Yet they have ignored one of the basic tenets of the early Christian church, that "Greed" is one of the seven deadly sins. Were these Republicans too busy counting their homes and cars during that part of the sermon?

continued>>>
http://www.opednews.com/articles/Greed-is-Not-Good-The-...
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KansDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-23-09 01:43 PM
Response to Original message
1. "Were these Republicans too busy counting their homes and cars..."
Well, you got to hand it to Sen McCain: If he was too busy, it wasn't because he was counting houses or cars...
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Fresh_Start Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-23-09 01:46 PM
Response to Original message
2. I have never understood how they resolve
the contradiction between their professed Christianity and their greed and failure to care for those in need

Then I had the insight that their faith is just a social club and not really their creed
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starroute Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-23-09 08:30 PM
Response to Reply #2
8. There's been this odd religious tenet of 'wealth-creation'
http://www.cjd.org/paper/wealth.html

The Economic Religion of Michael Novak: Wealth Creation vs. the Gospel, as in Using Catholicism to Prop up Neoconservatism

In what in the preface he calls a theology of the corporation, Novak combatively takes on those who want to "humanize" the corporation, that "tiny minority of publicly owned firms" which "produce more than half of America's economic output." We read this supposed theology and ethics of corporate governance from cover to cover. It was impossible to find even the slightest echo of the Gospel or of the great teachings of the Popes of the last century in the book. . . .

In Novak's chapter on "Appeasement," his business ethics becomes clear. While it may be wrong for a CEO to be concerned about environment and children, it is explicitly "wrong today for executives to conceive of their job narrowly, merely in its business aspects, without paying attention to its political setting, and even more so, to its setting in the world of ideas." Above all, executives must never give in to pressure and respond in "appeasement" as the sad CEO did, who actually agreed to broaden "stock-option participation to unite the investment interests of workers with those of the corporation, open up paths of decentralized entrepreneurship for employee."

Novak's presentation of the "The Corporation as it Ought to Be" might have been a textbook on economics written by Machiavelli. He goes to great lengths to explain why there should have been no checks and balances on the power of a CEO. Power is what he most needs to do his job and power he must have: "Executives must be allowed to executeThey must be propelled to step forward to create wealth." . . .

In order to popularize this economics, Catholic neoconservatives advocated it in the name of John Paul II, even though their inspiration came instead from Adam Smith. They began to speak of wealth creation as a participation in the work of the Creator, as a participation in the eternal life of God.

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Hello_Kitty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 03:51 PM
Response to Reply #8
11. Supply Side Jesus! eom
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Joe Chi Minh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 05:06 PM
Response to Reply #8
14. Though a coin of those times, and traditionally held to refer who, in the Gospel parable
It is ironical that Neo-Genesis, the Mammon-worshippers of our world of politics, economics and finance, are actually personified by the man who, in the Gospel parable related by Christ, was given only one talent, and immediately buried it in a hole in the ground!

Though a coin of the realm, and traditionally held to refer to mans natural gifts in that parable, the evidence seems compelling that they referred to supernatural grace, more specifically charity or self-denying love, the active ingredient of all the supernatural virtues.

Christ was clearly very wary of the way in which we human-beings are wont to conflate those two categories of virtue; indeed - perhaps unsurprisingly - paying greater tribute to the natural virtues, since their exploitation for our personal advancement comes to us naturally; whereas the supernatural virtues can cost us dearly.

Has not ambition, designated in the New Testament as a singularly pernicious vice, become almost the most exalted Christian virtue? How often do we hear or read in the media: He/She was so intelligent, too, as if that made it doubly regrettable that the person in question had died or been seriously injured and handicapped.

In the Parable of the Talents, the one talent that was given to the man is taken from him and given to the man who had most, so our Movers and Shakers ought to fear for their supernatural destiny more than most. But how ironical it is that the parable should be about banking investments. True, our Movers and Shakers are not the immediate victims of their own shenanigans, but God is not mocked, and the parable indicates that, if they do not amend their ways pronto, their turn to suffer torment will come, and it will not be just seemingly endless, there will be no respite. Too many innocent people are already suffering, because of their unconscionable idolatry.
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Hello_Kitty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 03:49 PM
Response to Reply #2
10. I've asked several of them that exact question and this is how they resolve it:
"It's not the government's job to take care of the poor. That's what churches and charities are for." They totally want a theocracy.
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LSparkle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-23-09 01:48 PM
Response to Original message
3. "Excess is best" could just as easily have been the mantra of the '80s
It was Michael Douglas in "Wall Street," it was Robin
Leach with "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous," it was
"Dallas" and "Dynasty" and the early obsession with
Princess Di. It WAS the reincarnation of the "roaring
20s" ... everyone getting rich and worshipping wealth
and demeaning work. The underlying attitude was that
excess was good, that moderation, sticking with
"typical American values" -- like saving for that
big-ticket item instead of charging it, for instant
gratification -- was being a chump.

I began my working life in 1980 ... I've only WORKED
in a "Reaganesque" economy ... and I regret that. I
wish I could have had the same opportunity to better
myself -- to improve my economic status -- that my
parents had during the '50s and '60s ...
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Nederland Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-23-09 01:49 PM
Response to Original message
4. Reagan never said "Greed is Good"
The line comes from a speech by Gordon Gekko, a character in the movie Wall Street.
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eppur_se_muova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 03:05 PM
Response to Reply #4
9. Thanks for setting the record striaght, quote Nazi.
Just kidding! :D I knew Reagan never said it, wondered why that wasn't the very first response.
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Democrats_win Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-23-09 01:49 PM
Response to Original message
5. You're not allowed to ask questions about Repubs not listening during the sermon.
That's been the rule for 28 years. We've had this love of greed for all of this time and we've all seen this "elephant" in the corner, but the media never asked.

Worse, it's probably too late to ask now. The rich people have all the bonus money. It doesn't matter.
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FiveGoodMen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-23-09 05:46 PM
Response to Original message
6. And yet, zombie-like, it continues to walk around and eat people's brains
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Hello_Kitty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 03:53 PM
Response to Reply #6
12. And vomit them out onto the LTTE page of the Arizona Republic every morning
I swear to god, we have the worst Raygun koolaid swilling morans in the world in Phoenix. :(
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infidel dog Donating Member (186 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 04:09 PM
Response to Reply #12
13. Ee-yeah, you do have some beauties in your state. My sympathies.
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OwnedByFerrets Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-23-09 06:16 PM
Response to Original message
7. It will take more than the complete destruction of America to
dethrone god Ronnie in some folks eyes.
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