Chamber Of Commerce Voter Suppression

There has been a wealth of citizens that have come out in favor of the voting rights bill in Congress, HR1, and yet as popular as it may be the corporations are in opposition…..but why would they care?

The Chamber of Commerce has issued a strong letter of opposition…..

This is the letter the Chamber has issued…..these are the points that they take exception with….

There are many other aspects of H.R. 1 that are extremely problematic. To highlight just a few:

  • H.R. 1 would fundamentally transform the FEC from a non-partisan agency comprised of three commissioners from each party into an overtly partisan enforcement tool controlled by a majority of commissioners from the political party then in power.
  • H.R. 1 would deem communication by corporations, including associations, to be “coordinated” and thereby prohibited if the organization has even the most innocuous and tenuous of connections with a candidate. For example, a meeting with an elected official to discuss a policy issue, an organizational employee who was previously employed by the elected official or candidate in any capacity, or a common vendor with a candidate would all have the practical effect of prohibiting corporations, including associations, from engaging in the political process.
  • H.R. 1 would also usher in a host of onerous disclaimer requirements for those engaging in communications that mention a candidate or elected official, even if those communications are related to legislative issues.
  • H.R. 1 would give taxpayer funds to political campaigns by allowing Americans to opt-into having their political donations matched by the federal government. Taxpayer money should be used to support projects like infrastructure initiatives and education programs and not political campaigns.

https://www.uschamber.com/letters-congress/us-chamber-key-vote-letter-opposing-hr-1-the-people-act

HR1 includes these points…..

This bill addresses voter access, election integrity and security, campaign finance, and ethics for the three branches of government.

Specifically, the bill expands voter registration (e.g., automatic and same-day registration) and voting access (e.g., vote-by-mail and early voting). It also limits removing voters from voter rolls.

The bill requires states to establish independent redistricting commissions to carry out congressional redistricting.

Additionally, the bill sets forth provisions related to election security, including sharing intelligence information with state election officials, supporting states in securing their election systems, developing a national strategy to protect U.S. democratic institutions, establishing in the legislative branch the National Commission to Protect United States Democratic Institutions, and other provisions to improve the cybersecurity of election systems.

Further, the bill addresses campaign finance, including by expanding the prohibition on campaign spending by foreign nationals, requiring additional disclosure of campaign-related fundraising and spending, requiring additional disclaimers regarding certain political advertising, and establishing an alternative campaign funding system for certain federal offices.

The bill addresses ethics in all three branches of government, including by requiring a code of conduct for Supreme Court Justices, prohibiting Members of the House from serving on the board of a for-profit entity, and establishing additional conflict-of-interest and ethics provisions for federal employees and the White House.

The bill requires the President, the Vice President, and certain candidates for those offices to disclose 10 years of tax returns.

If you are a political geek and would like to read the bill for yourself before you comment then here is the pdf for you to read…..all 791 pages!

Click to access BILLS-117hr1ih.pdf

Interesting that the most opposition comes from corporate America and its paid goons in Congress.

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“lego ergo scribo”

Big Tech For Voter Suppression

Do you use Facebook?

We all use Google.

What do you think of all the voter suppression in many states?

How does all these questions relate?

In the first quarter of 2021, Facebook, Google, and several other major American companies donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to a Republican political group that advocates for voter suppression laws around the United States.

Facebook donated $50,000, and Google donated $20,000, according to a new report from Popular Information, alongside a $50,000 donation from AT&T and $100,000+ donations from two major pharmaceutical companies: Eli Lilly and AstraZeneca.

The organization that received those donations — the Republican State Leadership Committee — describes itself as, “the largest national organization focused on electing Republicans to state offices in every corner of the nation.”

The RSLC supports Republican candidates that have supported voter suppression laws, and itself advocates for said laws.

https://www.businessinsider.com/facebook-google-donated-tens-of-thousands-to-republicans-this-year-2021-4

So the very sites that you use to stay in touch and/or get information have spent time and money helping these voter suppression laws by Repubs get passed.

Then there is AstraZeneca…the vaccine hero for the pandemic…….helping save lives all the while working to help suppress the vote….a perfect example of the slim in corporate world.

Facebook and the others were not alone….

Since 2015, AT&T, Comcast, UnitedHealth Group, Walmart, and other big businesses have donated a combined $50 million to state Republican lawmakers who are currently supporting voter suppression bills across the United States—generous political spending at odds with recent corporate efforts to rebrand as defenders of voting rights.

A new report (pdf) released Monday morning by consumer advocacy group Public Citizen found that during the 2020 election cycle alone, U.S. corporations donated $22 million to Republican architects of voter suppression bills that are advancing through state legislatures nationwide.

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2021/04/05/follow-money-corporations-gave-50-million-gop-lawmakers-behind-voter-suppression

Read the pdf and weep for our nation.

You still think these sites are indispensable to your life?

Maybe it is time to stop letting these corporate slugs run and ruin your life.

Thoughts?

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“lego ergo scribo”

Pandemic Profiteering

Closing thought–30Mar21

AS we struggle through this pandemic trying to pay rent or buy food or even to find work…..there are those that made out like bandits….and they did not even need a gun to rob the nation.

The 10 biggest “Pandemic Profiteers” saw the greatest percentage increase in their wealth—at least 300 percent.

1. Bom Kim (670 percent/$7.7 billion): A U.S. citizen and founder of the e-commerce giant Coupang, the Amazon of South Korea. Kim’s fortune surged as high as $11 billion after the company’s IPO in early March.

2. Dan Gilbert (642 percent/$41.7 billion): Owner of Quicken Loans, which capitalized on cloistered citizens tapping online financing. Lives in Michigan.

3. Ernest Garcia II (567 percent/$13.6 billion): Biggest shareholder of Carvana, the online car sales and auto-financing giant. Arizona.

4. Elon Musk (559 percent/$137.5 billion): Musk is now the second wealthiest Americans—at nearly $138 billion—as his shares in Tesla, Space-X and other companies that he owns continue to climb. Lives in Texas.

5. Brian Armstrong (550 percent/$5.5 billion): Chief executive of Coinbase, the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the country. California resident.

6. Bobby Murphy (531 [ercent/$10.1 billion): Co-founder of Snapchat, with his Stanford fraternity brother, Evan Spiegel. California resident.

7. Evan Spiegel (490 percent/$9.3 billion): Co-founder of Snapchat with his other billionaire super-gainer, Bobby Murphy. California resident.

8. Jack Dorsey (396 percent/$10.3 billion): Co-founder and CEOs of both Twitter and Square, the small business payment app. Lives in California

9. Anthony Wood (331 percent/$5.3 billion): Founder of Roku, which enables online TV video streaming. California resident.

10. Jeff Green (300 percent/$3 billion): Californian founder and chairman of The Trade Desk, a digital advertising firm.

They mostly multiplied their fortunes in the world of online goods, services and entertainment, as forcibly homebound Americans shopped, invested and diverted themselves in isolation. They include the owners of ecommerce leaders Quicken Loans, Square, Carvana, and cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase; social media sites Snapchat and Twitter; online streaming platform Roku; and digital ad agency Trade Desk. 19 other billionaires experienced increases of over 200% while 48 others more than doubled their fortunes with 100%+ gains.

Now how do you feel about that check you are waiting on?

And these profiteers did not have to wait.

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“lego ergo scribo”

Closing Thought–29Mar21

The pandemic hit and the drug companies went into high gear (with taxpayer money) to find a vaccine to protect the population from this killer…..

Behind the scenes the greed is starting to takeover….

Eager to capitalize on the lasting presence of the coronavirus, executives at Johnson & Johnson, Moderna, and Pfizer—the pharmaceutical corporations that supplied the Covid-19 vaccines approved for use in the U.S.—are quietly planning to hike prices on doses “in the near future,” once they decide the pandemic is over, The Intercept’s Lee Fang reported Thursday.

Although the rapid development of coronavirus vaccines—made possible by large infusions of public resources—has given Big Pharma companies “a boost in goodwill… the public is still sensitive to drug pricing and the reputational risk has, so far, curtailed their ability to reap large financial rewards,” Fang noted. “But that environment, they hope, will change once the pandemic ends: a date that drugmakers themselves reserve the right to declare.”

Many epidemiologists expect the coronavirus to become endemic, “and as Covid-19 mutations continue to spread and booster shots may be required on a regular basis, leaders from the three companies are enthusiastic about cashing in,” wrote Fang.

“As this shifts from pandemic to endemic, we think there’s an opportunity here for us,” Pfizer’s Chief Financial Officer Frank D’Amelio said during a recent healthcare conference sponsored by Barclays Bank. The potential need for booster shots, D’Amelio added, provides “a significant opportunity for our vaccine from a demand perspective, from a pricing perspective, given the clinical profile of our vaccine.”

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2021/03/19/big-pharma-quietly-planning-price-hike-covid-vaccines-near-future-report

This is unacceptable!

If taxpayer money was used to develop the vaccine there should be no profit….or if there is profit then the cash should go where the seed money originated…..the US treasury.

Time for the American people to see the fruits of their taxes.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Run The Country Like a Business

How many times in your lifetime have you heard that a business has the skill set to be a good and effective president?

For decades the GOP has been running businessmen as presidential candidates with the slogan that a successful businessman would be best for the country.

First let me say….It Is Bullshit!

I think the last GOP president that was a businessman proved just how much crap that promise is.

A business needs to turn a profit to remain alive…..the government cannot turn a profit when the very people that should know better spend their energy stopping the flow of revenue.

A lot of Americans think the country should be run like a business.

This is a problem on a few levels. Most obviously, a country isn’t a company. Businesses exist to turn a profit; countries do not, and competence in business rarely translates to competence in politics.

Treating the country like a business also encourages Americans to think of themselves as customers rather than citizens. Trump’s son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner spoke directly to this idea in a 2017 interview: “We should have excellence in government … The government should be run like a great company. Our hope is that we can achieve successes and efficiencies for our customers.”

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/22150375/america-consumerism-shopping-ethan-porter-the-consumer-citizen

How long must we suffer the BS of the GOP…..apparently for an eternity….for the GOP continues to lie and scrape out a position in a country that needs more from the government than Repubs are willing to work for…..

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Now More Bad News

Bad news for those that depend on drugs to keep them healthy and well…..like insulin, et al……

The bad news is Big Pharma has stated that there will be major drug increases at the beginning of the New Year…..like they need the increased cash.

As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, hospitalizations skyrocketed in 2020, but routine visits to the doctor’s office and demand for new prescription medications fell sharply during the worldwide lockdown.

To make up for lost revenue, the pharmaceutical industry plans to ring in the New Year by raising prices on more than 300 drugs in the United States on January 1, according to an analysis by healthcare consulting firm 3 Axis Advisors, whose findings were summarized in an exclusive report published Thursday in Reuters.

As Reuters pointed out, “The increases come as pharmaceutical companies like Pfizer are playing hero by developing vaccines for Covid-19 in record time.”

While scientific advances made by pharmaceutical companies have contributed to defeating the pandemic, critics argue that it would be naive to assume the industry is simply motivated to improve people’s well-being.

“Big Pharma’s greed is a danger to public health,” Reps. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) and Mark Pocan (D-Wis.) said earlier this year, when Gilead announced that it would charge U.S. hospitals $3,120 per privately insured patient for a treatment course of remdesivir, a Covid-19 drug whose development was financed in large part by taxpayers.

Pfizer spokesperson Amy Rose pointed to the coronavirus vaccine the company developed with Germany’s BioNTech in an attempt to justify next year’s drug price hikes. “This modest increase,” Rose said in a statement, “is necessary to support investments that allow us to continue to discover new medicines and deliver those breakthroughs to the patients who need them.”

Nevertheless, as David Mitchell, a cancer patient and founder of Patients for Affordable Drugs Now, said last month, “Drugs don’t work if people can’t afford them.”

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/12/31/drugs-dont-work-if-people-cant-afford-them-big-pharma-raise-prices-300-medications

What about all those vaccines to fight the Covid-19?

The Pfizer vaccine, also given in two doses, is expected to cost $19.50 a dose. Each dose for Johnson & Johnson’s two-dose vaccine will cost an estimated $10, and AstraZeneca’s two-dose vaccine could be the cheapest at just $3 to $4 a dose.

Am I wrong or did these companies get taxpayer money to expedite a vaccine?  If so  why should they make any money off the vaccines?

Do they think that because they are taunted as “heroes” because the pandemic will change the fact that they are raping the American people?

Time for these parasites to be put in their place as servants of mankind not the ruler.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Please Blow It Up!

I know that many of us would like for something epic to happen to Trump and/or property….after all he is a billionaire (questionable claim)…..his water line, his steaks, his wine and his university were all as worthless as their founder…..but what about the now defunct casino….what to do, what to do?

I say blow the damn thing up and make room for something useful……and believe it or not they are taking bids to do just that very thing…..

Part of President Trump’s former empire is going to come crashing down next month—and Atlantic City wants to use the moment to raise money for a good cause. The former Trump Plaza Hotel & Casino is being dynamited on Jan. 29, and the city is auctioning off the chance to be the person who presses the button for the implosion. “Some of Atlantic City’s iconic moments happened there, but on his way out, Donald Trump openly mocked Atlantic City, saying he made a lot of money and then got out,” says Mayor Marty Small, per CBS Philadelphia. “I wanted to use the demolition of this place to raise money for charity.”

Small hopes to raise more than $1 million with the auction, which will benefit the Boys & Girls Club of Atlantic City, reports the Press of Atlantic City. The casino opened in 1984. The building, now owned by billionaire Carl Icahn, has been empty since the casino closed in 2014, and the city says its crumbling facade has become a hazard. Trump probably won’t mind seeing the building demolished: In 2014, he sued to have his name taken off the casino, saying its “appalling condition” was damaging his brand, which “has become synonymous with the highest levels of quality, luxury, prestige, and success.”

Why not?

After all he never paid all the outstanding bills from the construction of that white elephant.

So by all means….blow the damn thing up….and do it on the day he loses the use of the White House…..make the humiliation total.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

The Clayton Anti-Trust Act 1914

Speaking of economic news……

Hold your breath it is time for the Old Professor’s history lesson…..first Mata Hari was executed in Paris on this date in 1917….and in 1966 the Black Panther Party is established……and in 1969 over 2 million people protested for the end of the Vietnam War…..

On this day. 15 October, in 1914 the US Congress passes the Clayton Anti-Trust Act…..

On this date, the 63rd Congress (1913-1915) passed the Clayton Antitrust Act (P.L. 63–212) in a bid to curb the power of trusts and monopolies and maintain market competition. By the turn of the 20th century, large corporations had cornered whole segments of America’s economy using predatory pricing, exclusive dealings, and anti-competitive mergers to drive local businesses to ruin. In Congress, Members decried the evils of monopolies, including Representative Robert Crosser of Ohio who warned that a “failure to check the growth of monopolies…will result in industrial slavery.” Representative Alben W. Barkley of Kentucky dubbed the trusts “offensive organizations.” Most agreed that government regulation of the trusts was too lenient and rallied around the Clayton Antitrust Bill when Representative Henry Clayton of Alabama introduced it in 1914. Representative John J. Casey of Pennsylvania remarked, “I realize and appreciate the importance of this bill, because I believe it is one of the most important that has or will come before this House for consideration.” The Act supplemented and strengthened the Sherman Act of 1890, an existing antitrust bill that had failed to effectively regulate the massive corporations. The newly created Federal Trade Commission enforced the Clayton Antitrust Act and prevented unfair methods of competition. Aside from banning the practices of price discrimination and anti-competitive mergers, the new law also declared strikes, boycotts, and labor unions legal under federal law. The bill passed the House with an overwhelming majority on June 5, 1914. President Woodrow Wilson signed it into law on October 15, 1914. 

This was suppose to cease the idea and exploitation of being a wage slave…….and how has that worked out?

This law has very little teeth anymore…..we have monopolies everywhere in our business societies….the US has a long history of trying to make the society more equitable……https://www.thoughtco.com/the-clayton-antitrust-act-4136271

How has all this legislation done at help this society become a more equitable society?

I do not see it….how about you?

(Watch this blog for more thoughts on monopolies….posts coming soon)

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“lego ergo scribo”

Delusional Amount Of Cash

I see that the Congress has left town , go figure, that is the one thing they all agree on, without any action on the new economic stim package to help the country deal with the costs of the pandemic.

People will soon lose or have their benefits cut or lost….and yet the only ones showing a profit out of the pandemic is corporations that are 100s of million of dollars that have seen profits jump by double digits……and what is the answer for the Fed?

Give the rich bastards more cash…..

Federal Reserve officials have launched what amounts to a full court press aimed at ensuring that Congress provides a further fiscal stimulus to corporations, as the COVID pandemic continues out of control and the limited revival of the US economy stalls.

While Fed representatives always couch their remarks in terms of giving assistance to the economy and even to workers, the fall in the stock market since the beginning of the month—the most significant downturn since the plunge in mid-March, when all financial markets froze—is the underlying concern.

The push began on Tuesday, when Fed Chair Jerome Powell gave testimony before the House of Representatives Committee on Financial Services. Powell repeated earlier calls for fiscal action, on top of the more than $3 trillion made available under the CARES Act.

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/09/25/econ-s25.html

All this leads me to ask the one simple question….why do we give corporations so much power over our lives?

The media leads us to believe that the markets going up is good for the people….it is not the only people that benefit are the CEOs.

Then why do we give them the power?

The American people own most of the wealth—private and public—and most of the information in the country. The top one percent do not.

The American people have most of the power in the country. The top one percent do not.

(If you believe any of that then I have a bridge I will sell cheap)

These assertions may surprise you, because the top one percent and the giant corporations work overtime to control what you own. This means they do not have to seize what you own so long as their control provides them with both riches and power over you.

Let’s spell this out with specifics. Our Constitution starts with the words, “We the People…”; it doesn’t start with ‘we the corporations’ or ‘we the Congress’ or ‘we the super-rich.’ The sovereign authority under the Constitution is us; we the people are the bosses. But we give our power away to the Big Boys who run the big companies that control most of our elected politicians. The politicians in turn proceed to corrupt our elections with campaign money, gerrymandering, deceitful ads, voter obstructions, and a totally dominant two-party duopoly. This corporate state destroys competitive democracy which would give our votes meaning, choices, and effectiveness.

The corporate “Borg” is sucking the ready availability of the good life, decent, secure livelihoods assured by our collective self-reliance, and the freedom to shape our future out of our political economy.

We have been brainwashed….and it has been a rousing success for we equate our personal success by others standards.

For Christ Sake—-Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Not By China!

The US is the arms dealer to the world…..and we will NOT tolerate anyone trying to horn in on our monopoly in arms.

Recently the US learned that Serbia is thinking of buying some defensive missiles from China…..

Interested in modernizing their defense systems, Serbia reports they are interested in the Chinese-made FK-3, a medium-range air defense model made for export. This would be a second purchase by Serbia from China, who just sold them some attack drones.

It makes sense for Serbia to be interested, because China is the low-cost solution. The US was mad about the drones, and is even madder about the air defense, warning Serbia that this could cost them EU membership if they go through with it.

Serbia insists no final decision has been made, and it’s not clear the US warning is sincere, let alone that the EU would listen to the US opinion on membership for Serbia. It’s unlikely this would be a real obstacle, even if the US gets mad.

Serbia probably doesn’t have an alternative, either, with US options probably too expensive for them. US anger is probably more going to be for China getting a foothold in Europe in the first place.

(antiwar.com)

One question…why is it okay for the US to sell their implements of destruction to the world but not for China to do so as well?

What happen to the idea of a “free market”?

Is the US admitting that the idea of “free markets” is a total lie and nothing more than a slogan to discard when it suits those using it?

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”