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Does a corrupt and reactionary bipartisan oligarchy run the USA?

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Karmadillo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-04-06 10:05 AM
Original message
Does a corrupt and reactionary bipartisan oligarchy run the USA?
Edited on Sat Mar-04-06 10:07 AM by Karmadillo
The WSWS writes about the money going from the UAE to the Dole, Clinton, and Bush families. Joshua Frank writes about Feinstein's war profiteering.

http://www.wsws.org/articles/2006/mar2006/duba-m04.shtm...

<edit>

Bill Clintons relations with the UAE are longstanding and lucrative. In 2002, he was paid $300,000 to address a conference in the emirate and received $450,000 for a more recent speech. The UAE has reportedly donated between half a million and a million dollars to the Clinton presidential library.

<edit>

Clinton has reciprocated by describing the dynastic regime in the UAE, where political parties are banned and the bulk of the population is made up of foreign laborers who enjoy no rights, as a role model for the Middle East and a critical ally in the war on terror.

<edit>

What is revealed here is the political life of a corrupt and reactionary oligarchy that controls the state and runs it for its own benefit. The leading political figures are either drawn directly from this ruling elite or rapidly elevated into it, making policy that benefits themselves and the fellow multi-millionaires and billionaires they represent.

These operations are largely hidden from the people, who are excluded from political power. The political establishment, unable to generate popular support for a system dedicated to enriching the top 1 percent, seeks to manipulate public opinion through lies and fear.

more...

http://www.zmag.org/content/showarticle.cfm?SectionID=7...

<edit>

The Democrats aren't just letting the Republicans get away with murder, however, some of them are also reaping the benefits of the Bush wars. We constantly hear about Dick Cheney's ties to Halliburton and how his ex-company is making bundles off US contracts in Iraq. But what we don't hear about is how Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein and her husband are also making tons of money off the "war on terror."

The wishy-washy senator now claims Bush misled her leading up to the invasion of Iraq. I don't think she's being honest with us though; there may have been other reasons she helped sell Bush's lies. According to The Center for Public Integrity, Senator Feinstein's husband Richard Blum has racked in millions of dollars from Perini, a civil infrastructure construction company, of which the billionaire investor wields 75 percent of Perini's voting share.

In April 2003 the US Army Corps of Engineers dived out $500 million to Perini to provide services for Iraq's central command. A month earlier in March 2003, Perini was awarded $25 million to design and construct a facility to support the Afghan National Army near Kabul. And in March 2004, Perini was awarded a hefty contract worth up to $500 million for "electrical power distribution and transmission" in the southern Iraq.

Senator Feinstein, who sits on the Appropriations Committee as well as the Select Committee on Intelligence, is reaping the benefits of her husband's investments. The Democratic royal family recently purchased a 16.5 million dollar mansion in the flush Pacific Heights neighborhood of San Francisco. It's a disgusting display of war profiteering and the leading Democrat, just like Cheney, should be called out for her offense.



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acmejack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-04-06 10:08 AM
Response to Original message
1. Short answer is and always has been yes
Smedley Butler had it right a long time ago, read his pamphlet "War is a Racket" it is posted on line.
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Cerridwen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-04-06 10:14 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. Here's a link for anyone interested in reading "War is a Racket"
http://www.ratical.org/ratville/CAH/warisaracket.html

And a snip from Chapter One...

CHAPTER ONE

War Is A Racket

WAR is a racket. It always has been.

It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives.

A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the people. Only a small "inside" group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many. Out of war a few people make huge fortunes.

In the World War a mere handful garnered the profits of the conflict. At least 21,000 new millionaires and billionaires were made in the United States during the World War. That many admitted their huge blood gains in their income tax returns. How many other war millionaires falsified their tax returns no one knows.

How many of these war millionaires shouldered a rifle? How many of them dug a trench? How many of them knew what it meant to go hungry in a rat-infested dug-out? How many of them spent sleepless, frightened nights, ducking shells and shrapnel and machine gun bullets? How many of them parried a bayonet thrust of an enemy? How many of them were wounded or killed in battle?

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Karmadillo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-04-06 10:23 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. "A man may be a patriot without risking his own life..."
The members of the plutocracy laugh and laugh at the rest of us.

http://wilpf.org/issues/ccp/corp/VI/VI-option1.htm

<edit>

While some millionaires started in poverty, most did not. A study of the origins of 303 textile, railroad, and steel executives of the 1870s showed that 90 percent came from middle- or upper-class families. The Horatio Alger stories of "rags to riches" were true for a few men, but mostly a myth, and a useful myth for control.

Most of the fortune building was done legally, with the collaboration of the government and the courts

Morgan had escaped military service in the Civil War by paying $300 to a substitute. So did John D. Rockefeller, Andrew Carnegie, Philip Armour, Jay Gould, and James Mellon. Mellons father had written to him that "a man may be a patriot without risking his own life or sacrificing his health. There are plenty of lives less valuable."

more...

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Cerridwen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-04-06 10:31 AM
Response to Reply #4
6. "There are plenty of lives less valuable."
That just says it all, doesn't it?

:puke: :cry: :puke: :cry: :puke: :cry:

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Kenergy Donating Member (834 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-04-06 10:17 AM
Response to Original message
3. Thanks for that post Karmadillo n/t
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...of J.Temperance Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-04-06 11:03 AM
Response to Reply #3
8. What so Joshua Frank bashing Democrats is great?
Edited on Sat Mar-04-06 11:05 AM by ...of J.Temperance
I thought this was DEMOCRATIC Underground, shouldn't we be concentrating on alerting people to the Republican Party and the disaster they've caused, instead of bashing Democrats and posting bitter and hateful rantings from Joshua Frank and a bitter and hateful Socialist website.

Joshua Frank is famous for hating Democrats and the Democratic Party.

On Edit: Dammit spelling error.
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hfojvt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-04-06 10:24 AM
Response to Original message
5. pretty much, with one major caveat
"Even as he raised taxes - primarily on the very rich - Clinton cut taxes deeply for the working poor. He greatly expanded the Earned Income Tax Credit - a tax incentive that rewards low-income people for working. Ronald Reagan signed the first EITC bill into law. President Clinton expanded it to make 15 million low-wage working families eligible. Combined with an increase in the minimum wage (from $4.25 to $5.15 an hour), Bill Clinton did more to reward, encourage and sustain low-wage working men and women than any president in history." (Paul Begala "It' Still the Economy, Stupid" p. 8)

A little bit over-stated there, only making the point that Democrats generally do more for the working class than Republicans do, and since 2001 Republicans have been diverting tons of benefits towards the wealthy and corporations at the public expense (and before I hear again how Democrats help them, let me mention the vote in the Senate on the Bush tax cuts of 2003. It was 51-50.)
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...of J.Temperance Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-04-06 10:58 AM
Response to Original message
7. Joshua Frank is uncredible and is paid by the Right-Wing to constantly
Write horsecrap that bashes Democrats, like his fellow Democratic Party hater Alexander Cockburn.

Also I'm not going to read anything from wsws.org which is a Socialist website that hates Democrats and the Democratic Party.
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Karmadillo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-06-06 08:26 AM
Response to Reply #7
10. Anything inaccurate in what Frank wrote?
nt
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Armstead Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-06-06 08:59 AM
Response to Reply #7
11. WSWS is actually a very good news source
You donlt have to be a socialist to appreciate the fact that they are very astute analysts and critics of the whole system.

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madrchsod Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-04-06 11:15 AM
Response to Original message
9. always has been -always will be
party name means nothing for people who worship money over all else....feinstein family is a perfect example of a democrat and bush family is a perfect example of a republican.
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