I was recently chastised by an acquaintance about why I am not more vocal on Obama and his presidency……and it is true….I was very vocal in the past about his candidacy but have not been so since…..first, I think the whole system is sick! Second, Obama has been a disappointment to me for he has changed NOTHING in the way DC does business….but with that said I will now commence my broadcast day with a review of his most recent speech, economic speech, delivered in Kansas…..what can I say about Kansas? Thinking……thinking……NOTHING good….but this is not about the state but rather a speech……
Let me begin, most of these types speeches are mind numbing…..and choked full of one liners that can be used for the 20 second sound bite on cable news shows….
Let me begin with the fact that he threw in some historical events is to my liking…..but I think that Obama should have mentioned the Teddy was running on the Progressive Party platform and NOT as a Repub……and that none of the major ideas were Teddy’s or even Republican…………..second almost everything that was on the platform were issues championed by socialists…..but that would not have been a good idea……Rush and that form of bottom feeder would have had a field day…….God forbid give due where due is warranted….
Now on to his speech…..I was impressed, not because it was a good speech but rather that it took forever to get to the point….he did say a few things that were to the point and spot on….like…..
(Applause.) I’m here in Kansas to reaffirm my deep conviction that we’re greater together than we are on our own. I believe that this country succeeds when everyone gets a fair shot, when everyone does their fair share, when everyone plays by the same rules. (Applause.) These aren’t Democratic values or Republican values. These aren’t 1 percent values or 99 percent values. They’re American values. And we have to reclaim them. (Applause.)
Obama has seem to acknowledge the OWS Movement with his reference of the 99% thing…..could this be the voice of a candidate realizing that the movement is not going away and trying to co-opt it into the Dems running strategy?
And then there were parts that I do NOT agree with……like this point…..
In today’s innovation economy, we also need a world-class commitment to science and research, the next generation of high-tech manufacturing. Our factories and our workers shouldn’t be idle. We should be giving people the chance to get new skills and training at community colleges so they can learn how to make wind turbines and semiconductors and high-powered batteries. And by the way, if we don’t have an economy that’s built on bubbles and financial speculation, our best and brightest won’t all gravitate towards careers in banking and finance. (Applause.) Because if we want an economy that’s built to last, we need more of those young people in science and engineering. (Applause.) This country should not be known for bad debt and phony profits. We should be known for creating and selling products all around the world that are stamped with three proud words: Made in America. (Applause.)
The part I disagree with is the innovation part…..why? Well, let’s look at Steve Jobs……a great innovator but almost all the jobs he created were in China….I agree with the parts about speculation and especially the “Made In America”….but innovation is not enough!
And there are the cutesy bumper sticker moments……
This isn’t about class warfare. This is about the nation’s welfare. It’s about making choices that benefit not just the people who’ve done fantastically well over the last few decades, but that benefits the middle class, and those fighting to get into the middle class, and the economy as a whole.
He is WRONG! It is ALL about class warfare….when one class does everything to keep another class immobile….then it is class warfare. Period!
All in all, as usual, he gave a good speech even if the crowd glazed over at minute number 10….but that is all it was….A SPEECH! If nothing changes or there is NO advancement toward the future it will have been a waste of a perfectly good afternoon.
College of Political Knowledge
Subject: Class Struggle
I was recently surfing my butt off when I ran across an excellent piece in “The Smirking Chimp” and it right along with a piece that I had written about the possibility of a class war which used a graphic that I uncovered on another wordpress blog, “runawaylawyer.wordpress.com”…….
Even if you are not a socialist you have to see where the decisions being made in the Congress and in the party ideology shows signs of a coming class war, though some will say that it is already here…….
A little class resentment to spice things up? Try a pinch of this: Mother Jones found that American CEOs make 185 times more than the average workers, another gap that has widened in the last three decades. These are people who are “lucky” enough to have jobs — many with limited or no benefits — as the unemployment rate has hovered near 10 percent for two years.
More tasty morsels? Currently, 6,736 households are in foreclosure in Connecticut; in some parts of the country, 1 out of every 84 houses is in foreclosure. Meanwhile, the sales of Rolls-Royces were up 171 percent last year, and someone called Richard Mille makes a wristwatch that costs $500,000 and can’t keep up with demand. The tax rate on the top dogs in the U.S. is at its lowest level since 1945, and thanks to the craven bipartisan work of Congress, the Bush tax breaks, which funneled most of the nation’s wealth to the top, are still in place.
There has always been an income gap in this country and the fact that poverty existed “in the richest country on earth” was a source of shame to some Americans, including members of Congress who once declared a war upon it. However, in past eras when the wealth gap was as dramatically severe as it is today, such as the Gilded Age, the Robber Barons at least built railroads, infrastructure, libraries, universities, etc. Today’s robber barons use money to make more money, creating absolutely nothing in the process other than chaos in households across America as retirement funds and bank accounts are wiped out by investment scams gone wrong. The perpetrators of the scams then award themselves bonuses while their victims foot the bills.
(from the Smirking Chimp)
Nothing being offered in Washington says anything different than a class war…..nothing is being done to protect the middle class and the working poor….instead everything is done to prop up corporations and their bank accounts…….
(Sorry Quin…I just had to go there!)
Tax cuts! Spending cuts! Who gets what? Who will smile? And who gets depression?
I found this graphic when I visited the blog of one of my newest readers, a good blog that deserves a look. runawaylawyer.wordpress.com…….
I have heard a lot of conserv commentators say that there is NO class war being waged in the US……..I know people do NOT want to hear it…..but I am sorry….but I cannot think of another term to use to describe what is being done to the working majority of this country……..how about the fight in Wisconsin? How about the labor wars in other “rust belt” states?…..check out the graphic….and then tell me what it is called!
There are story after story of how the working class is being manipulated at every turn….I cannot completely blame the conservs….after all the American people are dumb enough to fall for the rhetoric of the politicians……no matter how you cut it the working majority is getting the shaft and the corporations and the CEOs are getting the gold….if that is NOT class warfare….then you tell me what it is!
College of Political Knowledge
Subject: Society/Political Philosophy
This is a lengthy one, but it is a subject that cannot be simplified anymore than I have attempted……
My friend Quin of Quintessential Havoc (blogroll will get you to his site….visit soon and often) were having a conversation about education and social science and basically the welfare state and I said that there are two distinct classes in the US…the privileged and the non-privileged and that a person was not destined to remain in one or the other, that there was movement back and forth…..but let me explain why I feel that there is a class war starting (actually it has been going on for decades)….and for decades the division between the classes has been getting wider with each passing year….and NO one notices…..around 47% of the American people do not think that the “American Dream” is still realistic……the average salary for the average worker has gone up less than a $1000 in the last 20, maybe thirty years….while the average CEO’s pay has gone up a hundred fold in the same period….and they still say there is NO class distinction….they are wrong and it will get messy before it gets better….
First from the Newser website:
Plenty of time and space has been and will be devoted to figuring out why the income gap between the rich and poor has gotten so big in the US, writes Steven Pearlstein. Today, though, he focuses on the very real consequences: “Runaway inequality,” he writes, “undermines the unity of purpose necessary for any firm, or any nation, to thrive. People don’t work hard, take risks, and make sacrifices if they think the rewards will all flow to others.”"Without a sense of shared prosperity, there can be no prosperity,” writes Pearlstein. “And given the realities of global capitalism, with its booms and busts and winner-take-all dynamic, that will require more government involvement in the economy, not less.”
The poverty rate has NOT gone below 30 million people since 1982…..this is according to the census and I am sure that there will be those that will dispute the figures and want to quote those of some obscure think tank that has an agenda and the facts would just get in the way…..and then you have this occurring in the business community…..
US corporate profits are soaring in the midst of the deepest economic slump since the Great Depression, on the basis of a ruthless policy of using mass unemployment to slash wages and heighten the exploitation of American workers. In order to make the impoverishment of the working class a permanent feature of American life, companies are hoarding vast amounts of cash rather than hiring workers and expanding output.
These are the conclusions that flow from a Wall Street Journal analysis of second-quarter 2010 corporate profits, reported in the newspaper’s Monday edition under the headline “Propelling the Profit Comeback: Retooling, Downsizing.” The article gives statistics showing that US corporate profits are surging despite stagnant and even falling revenue, sharply increasing the percentage of revenue represented by profit.
I am sorry to crap on those who cannot see that there is a divide and a widening divide in the classes in the US…..but the economy is NOT about getting people back to work….but rather to improve the position of those who buy stocks….and before some mental midget tells us that a lot of Americans own stock…they do….but it is through a fund of some sort and that is who is getting wealthy off this slowdown in the economy…that the suckers that trust them….
This from the Newser website again………
American companies are sitting on record piles of cash right now, but instead of spending it to hire more workers or increase productivity, most are choosing to buy back huge quantities of their own stock, the Washington Post reports. This year firms have announced $273 billion in buybacks, more than five times last year’s figure. “They don’t know what they want to do with all the cash they’re sitting on,” explains one researcher.
And the US Congress is NOT helping either…..
The latest jobs bill from Senate Democrats – a plan to punish firms that ship jobs overseas – failed to clear a key procedural hurdle Tuesday after even some Democrats complained that the measure would hamper the ability of U.S. companies to compete in foreign markets.
Four Democrats and Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman (I-Conn.) voted with a united Republican caucus to block the bill, which was crafted to address the 9.6 percent unemployment rate in the run-up to November’s midterm elections. On a vote of 53 to 45, the measure failed to garner the 60 votes needed to overcome a GOP filibuster. (Thanx to Lori Montgomery of WaPo for the thoughts above)
All this is fueling the grow divide….there is cash out there for the companies to use to help end this recession….but they do not want the recession to end….thus the working stiffs are being used in an attempt to further the accumulation of wealth…..now there is NOTHING wrong with that….but these people owe something to the society that created them and their wealth…
This could degenerate into a new call for class warfare….Eventually the working class will realize that instead of comparing themselves with the lower paid co-workers they need to focus on their ever shrinking pay as compared to the CEOs and the like with multi million dollar bonuses and salaries……I know that scares the sh*t out of most people….but failing to see the problem approaching is a sure way to get your pee-pee spanked…..
Recently, the GOP held up benefits for the unemployed and refused to help 9/11 responders with their medical problems all because it would be too expensive….but yet they will do all necessary to help the wealthy keep more of their money….some will say it is not about class but money….but is that not what a class warfare is basically about?
I know most pundits will not acknowledge the class war (and yes there is a class war) because they would have to go against the corporate interests of their handlers and in doing so would jeopardize their million dollar contracts….so these people will continue to refuse to acknowledge the character of the class structure in the US….everyday they report just how well the economy is doing….actually it is the markets doing well…..all else sucks…the economy is NOT doing well when there is 17% real unemployment….and by all means keep voting for those who do NOT have your best interests at heart and eventually you will join those on unemployment……if that happens….you most likely deserve it!
Funny, amusing, not ha ha funny, that doing the election the workers and saving the middle class was all the rage. But now it seems to be not as important as it once was.
Remember during the primary season, before Edwards dropped out, he said that there were two Americas. And if you recall a lot of the media beat him up because of the statement. So far with the economic crisis I have seen nothing that would dispute his observation.
Since the beginning Washington, both the Bush and the Obama admin, have done all they could to save the financial industry. The people that gave us the meltdown of today. And with the other hand slapping the workers around, forcing them to give up many of the concessions that were won in past negotiations.
When Obama declares that the proposals submitted by GM and Chrysler are inadequate, the principal object of his attack is the working class. To carry out a “fundamental restructuring,” Obama said, “will require unions and workers who have already made extraordinarily painful concessions to do more.”
Wages will be slashed further; work rules will be gutted to increase exploitation; health coverage, pensions and other benefits will be slashed or eliminated. Immediately targeted are the medical benefits of hundreds of thousands of retirees.
And yet none of this was required of WallStreet, such units as AIG or Citigroup as if those institutions were somehow better than the auto industry and did not need to give up anything to get government bailout.
Back in January of this year I predicted that there was going to be a coming war of the collars and looks as if I was a seer. Ask yourself, why is Wall Street immune to the strict painful scrutiny of the government.
Unlike the auto CEOs, who faced two days of scolding at congressional hearings before leaving Washington empty-handed last week, the head of Citigroup, Vikram Pandit, didn’t even have to put in an appearance, much less wait for a congressional vote. All of the terms for the bank’s bailout were negotiated behind closed doors with Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, the former CEO of Goldman Sachs, and other senior officials.
While the auto executives were lectured about everything from their management failures to flying to Washington in private jets-and the media shrieked outrage over the “gold-plated benefits” of auto workers-no one grilled Pandit on how he could dare ask for a taxpayer-funded bailout as head of a crisis-ridden bank that awarded him a bonus of $30 million worth of stock at the beginning of this year, on top of the $165 million it paid him for his hedge fund as part of the deal to hire him. There were no sneering comments from the cable news “pundits” about how someone living in an $18 million apartment next to New York’s Central Park could come “cup-in-hand” to the government.
And, while Obama and the Democratic leadership in Congress demanded that the auto companies submit “a plan for future viability” before they receive a dime, no such plan was forthcoming from Citigroup. All that has been released to the public is a half-page joint memo from the Treasury Department, Federal Reserve and FDIC which announces the government bailout while committing Citigroup to nothing.
How is this blatant double standard and hypocrisy to be explained? Some have suggested that the Big Three deserve to fail because of gross mismanagement. But what can one say of the management at Citibank, which managed to lose more than 90 percent of the company’s value—from $244 billion to $20.5 billion-in the space of two years? More importantly, the source of these huge losses is largely the bank’s reckless speculation in the form of subprime lending and securitization-all in pursuit of astronomical bonuses for Citigroup’s traders and senior executives.
In the impending bankruptcy of the auto companies, the ruling elite sees an opportunity to carry out a massive attack on living standards, working conditions and social benefits, thereby forcing the working class to pay for the crisis.
The aim is to make an example of the auto workers, whose compensation historically has been a benchmark for the working class as a whole. This can be achieved either through outright bankruptcy and the potential liquidation of millions of jobs, or through a so-called rescue, extended in exchange for the decimation of wages, the ripping up of health and pension benefits for those on the job and the elimination of pensions and health insurance for hundreds of thousands of retirees.
Such an assault would be used as a precedent for similar attacks against every section of working people throughout the country.
You may not agree with the premise of class warfare, but only time will prove me right or wrong. Remember! I will have no problem telling you. “I told you so”.