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Gender: Female
Home country: USA
Member since: Thu Dec 1, 2011, 12:59 PM
Number of posts: 7,830

About Me

FDR Populist Progressive who believes the environment trumps all. We\'re sinking the only ship we\'ve got, and govt leaders are ignoring it.

Journal Archives

This interview explains the letter & how she studiously avoids endorsing Hillary~

STEPHANOPOULOS: You've been pretty clear, and we showed it in Jeff Zeleny's piece, that you say you're not running for president in 2016. It seems like you've just affirmed it again. You also signed a letter -- several senators signed a letter earlier this year encouraging Hillary Clinton to run.

So is she your candidate in 2016?

WARREN: You know, all of the women -- Democratic women, I should say, of the Senate urged Hillary Clinton to run. And I hope she does.

STEPHANOPOULOS: You hope she does. And if she does, she is your candidate, you're going to endorse her?

WARREN: If Hillary -- Hillary is terrific.

STEPHANOPOULOS: You know, you've said she is terrific very many times. You say that again in this book, "A Fighting Chance." But this book leaves out something of a pointed criticism from your earlier book, "The Two Income Trap."

There you praised first lady Hillary Clinton for her opposition to this bankruptcy bill pushed by the big banks, but go on to talk about how she, as New York senator, seemed she could not afford that principled position.

Senator Clinton received 140,000 in campaign contributions from banking industry executives in a single year. Big banks were now part of Senator Clinton's constituency. She wanted their support, and they wanted hers, including a vote in favor of that awful bill.

So do you think that -- are you worried that somehow she will bow to big business, those were your words in that book, if she becomes president?

WARREN: Look, I've made it clear all the way through this book and really what I've been working on for the last 25 years, that I'm worried a lot about power in the financial services industry.

And I'm worried about the fact that basically starting in the '80s, you know, the cops were taken off the beat in financial services, these guys were allowed to just paint a bull's eye on the backsides of American families.

They loaded up on risk. They crashed the economy. They got bailed out. And what bothers me now is they still strut around Washington. They block regulations that they don't want. They roll over agencies whenever they can. And they break...

STEPHANOPOULOS: Did they rollover Hillary Clinton?

WARREN: Well, that's -- they break the law, and still don't end up being held accountable for it, and going to jail.

One of the things that I focus on really hard throughout this book is that that is one of the prime examples of how the playing field is tilted and how we've got to push back against it.

It's a central issue for me. It's something I'm going to keep talking about. And I'm going to keep talking about it with everyone.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Right. But -- I understand. Do you think Hillary Clinton will push back on that as well?

WARREN: Well, I'm going to keep talking about this issue. And I'm going to keep pushing on this issue.


Elizabeth warren has never said she supports trickle-down. Only Third Way Dems do that.

“The trickle-down experiment that began in the Reagan years failed America’s middle class,” Warren said in her fiery keynote address to an AFL-CIO conference on raising wages.

“Pretty much the whole Republican Party, and if we’re going to be honest, too many Democrats, are overly cozy with the financial industry and make decisions that benefit the wealthiest 10 percent of Americans while leaving others to struggle, she said...


Elizabeth Warren must crash the Clinton coronation party and run for the Presidency


Elizabeth Warren must crash the Clinton coronation party and run for the Presidency

The media has a new obsession these days. Elizabeth Warren.

Or more precisely, the effect of Elizabeth Warren on Hillary Clinton, the presumptive nominee from the Democratic Party. The emerging conventional wisdom is that the mere presence of Elizabeth Warren in the Senate is far more serious or influential than the Massachusetts lawmaker would be in a presidential primary or in the Oval Office. The emerging conventional wisdom—which might have been written in wherever Hillary Clinton’s non-campaign headquarters are—is that Warren is forcing Clinton to change her rhetoric and move to the left during the primary that establishment Democrats desperately hope will be no kind of primary at all. This is a chain of events Clintons backers and hangers-on are willing to countenance because they know that precious little their candidate says during a primary will matter when the neoliberal, neoconservative Clinton gets down to governing.

Serious journalists might pick up on this and ask, given the expertise with which both Clinton’s triangulate and contort to fit a given audience, why it matters what Clinton says during a presidential primary when everything we’ve seen of her in and out of government suggests that she is firmly committed to the neoconservative, neoliberal consensus which keeps our country mired in imperial wars and our citizens stripped of the protections which succor the lives of citizens in most other democracies in the world today.

But the hacks who populate the pages of too many papers and news sites in the United States treat politics as a parlour game instead of an earnest moral endeavor that has the capacity to transform for better or worse the fortunes of hundreds of millions of people. Certainly, changes in Clinton’s rhetoric show the influence of people like Elizabeth Warren. But what matters at the end of the day is whom Clinton would owe when she entered the White House, and the kinds of interests that have shaped her thinking and political actions—not words—down the decades.

Imagine the spectacle of Hillary Clinton facing off against Mitt Romney in a presidential race. Two of the fattest felines in politics, both with a history of support for trickle-down economics, purring about who cares about inequality and poverty the most while taking checks from people committed to enshrining corporate power and the plutocracy that goes along with it....


The entire blog post makes some very good points, worth your time to check it out. Very well-written.

The Hill: 5 reasons the Left doesn’t believe Warren

5 reasons the left doesn’t believe Warren

Here are five reasons the left hears “yes” when Warren says “no.”

1.) She hasn't definitively ruled out a presidential run.

"Every candidate says they're not running before deciding to run," said Erica Sagrans, campaign director at Ready For Warren.

..."Things change fast in politics, and Warren hasn't ruled anything out," Sagrans said.

..."Warren is wisely hedging her bets. She is underselling herself politically by saying, 'No,' which is intriguing to the base but she is leaving room to potentially over-deliver publicly should the circumstances merit her jumping into the 2016 fray," said Ford O'Connell, a GOP strategist.

2.) She's distancing herself from President Obama.

Warren flexed her political muscle during the budget negotiations late last year and spearheaded a successful revolt against an Obama nominee to the Treasury Department with ties to Wall Street.

Her attention-grabbing moves come at a time when Democrats are fiercely debating whether to move to the middle on economic issues or shift to the left....

3.) She hasn't ordered the grass roots groups to shut it down.

,,,"We're not running this campaign because of some sort of parsing of her speech," said Nick Berning, MoveOn.org communications director. "We take her at her word. We're running the campaign because we think our country will be better off if she enters the race."

"Elizabeth Warren has always been a reluctant politician, but she has always listened to her supporters," Sagrans said.

Sagrans noted that in Warren's book, the senator wrote that she was persuaded to challenge then-Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.) during the 2012 Senate race after one of her supporters urged her to get in....

4.) Her promotional tour didn’t end after the midterms.

Warren campaigned heavily during the 2014 midterm election campaign, hitting the trail in states like Iowa, Kentucky and West Virginia. While she campaigned for these candidates, it also seems to have fueled national interest in her own political career...

5.) She's remained tight-lipped about Hillary Clinton.

It seems that virtually every prominent Democratic politician is being asked about Clinton ahead of 2016. While Warren did join each of the female Democratic senators in the last Congress in signing a letter urging Clinton to run, she has not openly endorsed her probable candidacy.

In an interview with The Washington Post in June, Warren declined an opportunity to defend Clinton after she said in an ABC News interview that she and former President Bill Clinton were "dead broke" after leaving the White House.

The Post reported that Warren paused for "a full 19 seconds" because answering: "Uh, I was surprised."

"There is no question about Warren is mulling a run and she has the dynastic Team Hillary unnerved," said O'Connell, the GOP strategist.


They're setting us up to understand when We The People have to bail out the banks agsin.

And they'll blame OPEC.

That was what the Citi rider in Omnibus did for US, to protect the banks.

Derivatives taken out to ensure prices don't go down are now creating billions in losses for those who sold such bets on the market; someone is going to have to absorb massive losses created by the sudden drop in oil on the other end of those insurance contracts. In many cases, it is the big Wall Street banks, and if the price of oil does not rebound substantially they could be facing colossal losses.

The huge losses may send a shock wave into the entire financial industry. It has been estimated that the six largest "too-big-to-fail" banks control $3.9 trillion in commodity derivatives contracts, those same gambling instruments that brought us the 2008 housing collapse. And a very large chunk of that amount is made up of oil derivatives. Combined with the huge flood of shale junk bonds on the market, the derivatives could initiate a bubble burst that could turn into a financial market implosion.

...There are also those who scratch their heads and ask, "Why did the TBTF banks push for a deletion of the Dodd-Frank provision now, instead of waiting for the friendlier Republican-controlled Congress to pass this legislation?" The only answer that seems to make sense, and explain their urgency, is that the collapse is imminent.


You mean like the "present" of him keeping his word?

So many choices, but this is still freash...

July 2014
Obama Launches 'Populist Bombshell' At Wall Street

President Barack Obama declared Wednesday that "an unfinished piece of business" is to crack down on banks that accept "big risks because the profit incentive and the bonus incentive is there for them."

Obama made his remarks in an interview on the "Marketplace" radio show in which he struck an unusually fiery tone addressing Wall Street and the banking industry. Potomac Research Group labeled the interview a "populist bombshell" in its Thursday-morning briefing.

"Now, it's a great strength of our economies that we've got the deepest, strongest capital markets in the world, but what has also happened is that as the financial sector has grown, more and more of the revenue generated on Wall Street is based on arbitrage — trading bets — as opposed to investing in companies that actually make something and hire people," Obama said, according to a transcript...


December 2014
Inside Wall Street’s new heist: How big banks exploited a broken Democratic caucus
...After wounding the provision, the banks employed their allies in Congress to disappear it entirely. A bipartisan coalition, including Jim Himes, D-Conn., a former vice president at Goldman Sachs, introduced a host of bills to weaken derivatives rules as far back as 2011. HR 992, the “Swaps Regulatory Improvement Act,” sailed through the House Financial Services Committee 53-6 in spring 2013. The language of this bill, written by Citigroup lobbyists, is virtually identical to what passed in the CRomnibus. Rep. Maxine Waters, the ranking member on the Democratic side, waged a fairly lonely battle to limit Democratic support. On the House floor, 70 Democrats voted for the final bill, far fewer than was initially expected. This enabled Senate Democrats to ignore the bill as a stand-alone entity.

House Republicans, egged on by Wall Street lobbyists, tried another tactic. Kevin Yoder, R-Kan., a two-term member of the House Appropriations subcommittee overseeing financial services, stuck HR 992 into the financial services appropriations bill without a formal vote, pitching it as an aid to “the farmer in your district who wants to get a loan,” rather than Jamie Dimon or Lloyd Blankfein. Nobody ever tried to strip it out, and the rider easily advanced through the process.

...But it’s just as likely that the establishment didn’t mind the outcome, letting them look like the sensible centrists “getting something done.” That was probably the motivation behind President Obama ultimately endorsing and even whipping for the bill.

Whatever the outcome, we know that Wall Street exploited a fractured Democratic caucus to restore a big subsidy to its profits. And if Democrats don’t contend with that – or worse, if they don’t want to – you can expect many more congressional victories for the financial sector.


Sen. Schumer lays out battle over Keystone pipeline

Sen. Schumer lays out battle over Keystone pipeline

Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-New York, said Democrats have enough votes to support the president if he vetoes a bill to begin construction on the Keystone XL pipeline.

"I think there will be enough Democratic votes to sustain the president's veto," said Schumer, the number three Senate Democrat, on "Face the Nation" Sunday.

The Senate narrowly defeated a bill to fast track construction of the pipeline after the House passed it in November. After the vote, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, pledged it would be the first bill he takes up when Republicans assume control of the Senate later this month.

Despite Schumer's belief that President Obama would veto the bill, he said that when it comes to the floor, Democrats still plan to offer a series of amendments to make it "more of a jobs bill."

"Our Republican colleagues say that this is a jobs bill but that really is not true at all. By most estimates it would create several thousand temporary construction jobs and only 35 permanent jobs," Schumer said.

The amendments his party might offer include requirements that the steel used in the pipeline be made in America and that the oil that is transported through it be used in America. They would also likely introduce an amendment to create clean energy jobs.

"Why create very few jobs with the dirtiest of energy from tar sands when you can create tens of thousands more clean jobs using wind and solar?" Schumer said. ...


Well, I hope you aren't calling the Democrats in Congress 'defeatist' fringe.

They've been our protective wall against most of Obama's trade plans for a while now.

...Shifting majority control of both houses of Congress to Republicans is certainly a positive for progress in trade policy.

Since 2008, both Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi had come out against giving President Obama “fast-track” authority for trade deals,
preventing any trade agreement from previously receiving a clean up-or-down vote, a mistake which the next Congress can correct. The most important ongoing trade negotiations that could wrap up as early as next year include the Trans-Pacific Partnership (T.P.P.) with Asian nations, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T.T.I.P.) with the European Union, and reopening trade relations with Cuba by overturning the Helms-Burton Act, effectively lifting the embargo...


...The Obama administration, though, has not had the support of Democrats in the United States Congress. Senior Democrat Representative Sander Levin has expressed reservations about the process and the substance of the TPP. Senator Elizabeth Warren has worried about how the TPP will affect the financial regulation of Wall Street. Other Democrats have additional reservations about the TPP. Senator Ron Wyden is of the view that the fast-track regime needs to be overhauled and modernised. Three House of Representatives Democrats — Reps. Rosa DeLauro (Conn.), Louise Slaughter (N.Y.) and Alan Grayson (Fla.) — maintained that there are insufficient votes in the House to pass the trade promotion authority to secure the approval of the 12-nation TPP. De Lauro commented: ‘Fast-track doesn’t have support in the current Congress and won’t have support in the next Congress’. She declared: ‘The votes are not there.’

Nonetheless, President Barack Obama has said that he is willing to defy United States Congressional Democrats on his support of the TPP...


Over $400 mill has already been paid out to corps in a series of investor-state FTA cases

Among the most dangerous but least known parts of today's "trade" agreements are extraordinary new rights and privileges granted to foreign corporations and investors that formally prioritize corporate rights over the right of governments to regulate and the sovereign right of nations to govern their own affairs. These terms empower individual foreign corporations to skirt domestic courts and directly challenge any policy or action of a sovereign government before World Bank and UN tribunals.

Comprised of three private attorneys, the extrajudicial tribunals are authorized to order unlimited sums of taxpayer compensation for health, environmental, financial and other public interest policies seen as undermining the corporations' "expected future profits." There is no outside appeal. Many of these attorneys rotate between acting as tribunal "judges" and as the lawyers launching cases against the government on behalf of the corporations. Under this system, foreign corporations are provided greater rights than domestic firms.

This extreme "investor-state" system already has been included in a series of U.S. "trade" deals, forcing taxpayers to hand more than $400 million to corporations for toxics bans, land-use rules, regulatory permits, water and timber policies and more. Under a similar pact, a tribunal recently ordered payment of more than $2 billion to a multinational oil firm. Just under U.S. "trade" deals, more than $14 billion remains pending in corporate claims against medicine patent policies, pollution cleanup requirements, climate and energy laws, and other public interest policies. Continue reading...


Investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) is an instrument of public international law, that grants an investor the right to use dispute settlement proceedings against a foreign government.

...Notably, only foreign investors can sue states under investment treaties, and only states can be held liable to pay damages for breach of the treaty. States have no corresponding right to bring an original claim against a foreign investor. Thus, a decision in favour of the State means that the state has not been ordered to pay compensation, not that it has received any compensation from the investor. A state cannot "win" in ISDS in the manner of a foreign investor.


Coming to a town near you via TPP?

Check this map to see what corps can sue you, your state or city govt~

. Click here for a full list of companies based in TPP countries that operate in the United States, sorted by congressional district.
= Corporation based in Australia = Corporation based in Vietnam
= Corporation based in Canada = Corporation based in Singapore
= Corporation based in Japan = Corporation based in Mexico
= Corporation based in Malaysia = Corporation based in New Zealand
= Corporation based in Peru
= Corporation based in Brunei
= Corporation based in Chile

Public Citizen, the Sierra Club, Friends of the Earth, and other organizations have called for a different trade agreement model that protects the environment, workers’ rights, and the public interest. This new model necessitates eliminating or dramatically scaling down the “investor-state enforcement” provisions of trade agreements which corporations can use to sue governments. Click here for a report outlining this vision.


What does Liz think?
...Warren, Baldwin and Markey are particularly concerned with a process called "investor-state dispute settlement," which grants foreign corporations the political power to challenge the laws and regulations of a government before an international tribunal. This nongovernmental court has the power to levy trade sanctions against offending nations. The investor-state dispute settlement regimen differs from those used in World Trade Organization treaties, which allow only sovereign governments to bring trade challenges.

"We believe that the TPP should not include an investor-state dispute settlement process," the letter reads, warning that doing so "would expose a broad array of critical American financial regulations to challenge by many additional foreign companies."

Investor-state challenges were rare before the new millennium, but have become increasingly popular tools for corporations to use when challenging regulations they object to. Under the North American Free Trade Agreement, for instance, companies including Exxon Mobil, Dow Chemical and Eli Lilly have attempted to overrule Canadian regulations on offshore oil drilling, fracking, pesticides, drug patents and other issues.

Unrest over investor-state powers is not exclusively a progressive phenomenon. Free-trade advocate Daniel J. Ikenson of the Cato Institute has argued against the practice, on the grounds that it gives foreign firms an unfair advantage over domestic companies....


Thanks for the link! Signed that a few days ago. Its a starting point.

We all need to call our reps in all states, too.



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