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Archive for the ‘Sorry to Get all Politico’ Category

I’m a realist and a pragmatist when it comes down to it. Sure,  I would pee my pants with joy if Sanders won the DEM nomination.  I’d be willing to bet my house that if he was the nominee he’d win in the general election. 

(I’m sick of Dems/progressives claiming he’d lose because he’s a Jew socialist-and I’m tired of explaining why,  but if you’re interested let me know and I’ll tell you- not to mention the national polls back this up)

But from the beginning the chances that Sanders would get the nomination were damn slim if not nearly unthinkable. So here comes the NY primary where Bernie would have to beat HRC to make up some ground in the regular delegate count. Studying the polls it doesn’t look like that will happen.  Sure,  it happened in Michigan- which will forever be known as the biggest poll miscalculation in the history of modern polling – but I’m too emotional to get my hopes up that something like that would happen twice in one primary season.  HRC leads by double digits in the polls. She’ll probably win by double digits. If she wins by ten percent or less I consider that a moral victory for us as humans/Americans/new Yorkers.

So what then?  Some Bernie folk will refuse to give up on his nomination. What happens if he loses in California? Some will give up completely and not vote/campaign for HRC in the general election.  And some like myself will vote for Bernie in the primary in Oregon.  Some like me will write in Bernie’s name in the general election.  And if you live in a solid blue state – NY, California, Washington, Oregon -these are also the state’s where most of the people I know live – I would highly encourage you to write in Bernie’s name,

but if you live in a swing state or have friends/family who do I would beg you to vote for and encourage others to vote for the Democratic nominee. At the very least … At the very least that nominee will keep #Obamacare aka my healthcare/my brothers health care and millions of others.  At the very least that democratic nominee will get to choose the next supreme court justice and … this is a long shot – someone who would repeal citizens United. 

At the very least – that democratic president will protect women ‘s reproductive rights/health/etc.

There are a few other things this democratic President would do,  but I’m done writing for now.

The problem is whether this Democratic nominee will make voters just as apathetic as Gore and Kerry did.  because she is a woman I’d like to think this isn’t possible (negating a possible Bengazi or email bombshell)

I’m trying to get you Bernie lovers (and I’m one) to think about the consequences I/we/the world might face other wise.

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Hillary just won the Nevada Primary 53% to Bernie’s 47%. I hate be a naysayer, but with that decisive win I think Bernie is cooked. And damn I’m pissed. Bernie’s team did not connect with the people in Clark County/Las Vegas. He won most other counties, but not there. Bernie’s people were not able to convince these folks how hard Bernie would work to better their lives. It shows Bernie’s weakness in the West.

  1. His ideas aren’t getting out there
  2. The Hillary machine is all powerful
  3. People are so scared of a Republican they don’t think Bernie can win56c8aa16c46188a2798b45d7

The pre polling in Nevada showed a closer race. That’s why I made a few calls to voters to try and get out the vote for Bernie. I was hoping Bernie would keep it close/tie or maybe even eek out a win. But sadly no.

The one positive of today’s primaries is Trump’s win in South Carolina. Trump took 32%, Rubio 22.5% and Cruz 22.3%. I can’t help but laugh and enjoy the thought of the Republicans struggling/scrambling/freaking out about this. They are fucked. If McCain and Romney couldn’t win Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Nevada – there is no way in hell Trump could hope to win. And just imagine Trump debating? Unbelievable. I mean just imagine Trump as the Republican nominee. That is fucking crazy.

So if Trump is the nominee? Hillary wins easy – right? Well- what if she doesn’t? What if she gets caught up in some new/old controversy? (Benghazi/emails/Clinton baggage). What if she loses? Well then the joke is on us? Everyone is gonna feel bad they didn’t support Bernie.

But what if Cruz somehow wins the nomination?

I’ll repeat myself.

They are fucked. If McCain and Romney couldn’t win Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Nevada – there is no way in hell Cruz could hope to win. And just imagine Cruz debating? Unbelievable. I mean just imagine Cruz as the Republican nominee. That is fucking crazy.

So if Cruz is the nominee? Hillary wins easy – right? Well- what if she doesn’t? What if she gets caught up in some new/old controversy? (Benghazi/emails/Clinton baggage). What if she loses? Well then the joke is on us. Everyone is gonna feel bad they didn’t support Bernie.

But what if Rubio is the nominee? Well … that’s a slightly different story. I’m tired now.

I love you Bernie. Thanks to everyone who supports him and his ideas. Thanks to everyone who believes we’re not getting a fair shake here in the good USA while Canada, Europe etc continue to provide for those in need and continue having stronger campaign finance laws/better tax code ideas/distribution of wealth/free/-affordable higher education/health care etc etc. Maybe there’s still hope. I don’t think so. Hillary will be the nominee and I will vote for her. I don’t know if I’ll campaign for her. I’ll wait and see what the polls say/what Nate Silver says. She’s not going to inspire the youth turnout that came out for Obama and would come out for Bernie.

Fingers crossed.

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Jeff: “me & Katey & Peter & Kristin went to go see “Inside Job,” which you’ve probably seen but if you haven’t then you should definitely see it.”

Jack:  “I have not seen Inside Job, but I’m taking macroeconomics, so I know the deal.”

 

Jeff: “You should definitely see Inside Job, everybody should see it.  Especially
for you to relate it to your classes, because there’s some stuff about the
way economics are taught in the US.”

Jack: sure sure, But I have a pretty liberal economics professor.
Right now we’re doing the classical/orthodox method which is the basic
Laissezfaire idea that most conservatives subscribe to and have
convince most poor americans to do this as well against their
interests.


Then we’ll finish with the Keynesian model with some Marxist model.


Did they talk in the movie about how the government got rid of the
Glass-Stegal act in 1999 (under Clinton) this was an FDR policy that
regulated banks and prevented them from investing in the stock market
themselves.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glass_Steagall_Act

Also, I saw an interesting interview with Bill Moyers and Bill Bartlett. Barlett had some smart stuff to say about people in general.

http://billmoyers.com/video/

1. People think if government is more powerful, people will be less powerful
2. People don’t know how their taxes are being spent (this is based on
surveys, but I’m not sure if it was just a  survey of Tea Party people
or not.).
They think gov spends %20 on foreign aid, it is really %1. They think
they are being taxed at a higher rate then they are. (they think %50,
when it’s around 20-30%)
The government should break it down for everyone simple, total % a
year (state/federal)- + what it’s spent on % wise.

Jeff: Jack, you say:

“The government should break it down for everyone simple, total % a
year (state/federal)- + what it’s spent on % wise.”

I absolutely agree.  I started writing you back but it expanded so much that I also decided to post it on the OJ board.
Here’s my thought:

I’ve been saying this for a little while and I wonder why it isn’t said more.
Maybe somebody can point out flaws in this idea that I haven’t considered yet.

Why not have more REAL democracy by allowing every citizen, on his or her tax return each year, to decide where they want their tax money to go to?
Each year the IRS should provide a pie chart, or similar graph, to show how Americans’ tax money was spent in the preceding year (or years).  People could check off a box that says “let the elected government officials decide how to allocate my tax payments this year” but they would ALSO have the option to create a pie chart or other graph of how they want THEIR OWN tax contribution to be divided up in the coming year, among a list of existing categories:  funding for education, military spending, arts programs, infrastructure, scientific research into sustainable energy, etc etc.

This could begin as merely a survey, without changing the current system of tax funds being allocated via elected (or appointed) officials, just to see how different the will of the tax paying public is from the decisions that are being made in their name.

Ultimately if implemented it would be true financial democracy, and society would benefit or fail based on its actual democratic decisions, removed from any threat of elected/appointed officials’ self-interest/ideology or other distortions of democracy which are inherent in a republic form of government.

The government could still oversee the process via the usual departments, and there could still be some form of electoral college to balance out the results of popular vote results vs. electoral vote results, to avoid high-populated areas/states receiving too much representation in budget decisions. For example this would be important if a low-population state (such as Maine) might still be very rich in resources (such as wood), and might be uncomfortable with a high population state (such as California) having too much influence over how to allocate Maine’s resources; other such situations would exist too, which would require some balancing between electoral and popular votes regarding tax money allocation, just as the current system attempts to balance such issues (for example each state gets 2 senators regardless of population, plus a number of representatives proportional to state population, seemingly an effective compromise).  America is already used to the flexibility involved in juggling representation between federal and state interests; if this is a point of contention regarding the allocation of tax resources via democracy, that’s no different than any other federal vs. state issue that goes on in America all the time (like the Civil War for example).

Anyway, like our “republic” system of democratically elected representatives, I believe that the current tax system was a system formed based on the technological realities of the day in 1776, at which point only representational democracy rather than actual democracy would have been technologically practical.  But the world is very different today.

Everybody knows that power corrupts – that’s one of the great arguments for democracy in the first place, the de-centralization of power, a process that has made slow (but definite and progressive) headway against countless millennia of centralized/arbitrary power systems.

The argument against democracy is also millennia old: the people are too uneducated as a mass for majority-rule to effectively steer society in and of itself.  But this seems an awfully self-serving argument when made by an existing power structure.  How many individuals would, if given the choice, prefer the decisions affecting them to be made by somebody else?  Probably very few, at least according to the values of democracy/freedom/self-determination that we Americans have been pumped full of since birth.  And perhaps these values are inherent in all humanity, perhaps even in most life forms.  That may or may not be true.  In any case, a democratic tax system – why not??  Do you believe in democracy or don’t you??

Jack: you’re plan is a little to radical and unrealistic.
I simple want some tax code reform which I think is more realistic goal.
Oregon is a broke state,
but they could help that by imposing a %1 sales tax on none essential
goods (not on food etc). But it seems impossible to get this done.

During the New deal, anyone making over 5 million was taxed at about a
75% tax rate.
this continued until Reagan. It’s now below %20 because of tax loop holes.
(Mitt   %15, Warren Buffet taxed less than his secretary)

You’re idea doesn’t really work because people do need to contribute
to an anonymous collective whole, but they would never do that given
the choice.
Sure it’d be interesting if this was done every year as a survey
hypothetically and the categories were chosen for people

Military
state (local education, infrastructure, public officials etc)
fed (education, infrastructure etc)

etc etc

Jeff: “You say
“Did they talk in the movie about how the government got rid of the
Glass-Stegal act in 1999 (under Clinton) this was an FDR policy that
regulated banks and prevented them from investing in the stock market
themselves.”

Yes, it did talk about this.  But the movie only said this allowed savings banks to merge with investment banks, and the movie didn’t mention what I thought was an important part of this decision, based on what I’ve read on Wikipedia:  the original Banking Act of 1933 (Glass-Stegal Act) also established the FDIC, which was a way to prevent a “run on the bank” from occurring like what used to happen in the wild west and before the great depression.  The FDIC was/is government insurance for everybody who had their money in a regular savings bank, up to a certain amount  (it was originally something like $2,500 in 1933).  In other words, if you were just a normal person putting money in a bank, not somebody making an investment hoping to make a profit, then no matter what happened to that savings bank, if the bank went out of business, or everybody pulled their money out of the savings bank at the exact same time (a “run on the bank”), the government would make sure that every person would get the amount of money they had put into that savings bank (up to a certain amount).  If the bank really didn’t have the money to pay everybody, the government would cover the rest of the loss, from tax payers’ money.  That’s why there was a limit on how much each person’s bank investment could be covered, and that limit of course rose over the years, until I think the FDIC currently insures each citizen up to $250,000 of what they put into a savings bank.  This was also a big reason for the original Glass-Stegal 1933 provision that savings banks HAD to be completely separate from investment banks – because investment banks are much riskier, so the government refuses to ensure THAT risky money with an FDIC guarantee.  (The same as how you might pay your car insurance company to insure your normal, safe car, but that insurance doesn’t also cover the 300-mile-an-hour race car that you drive on race tracks on weekends – it’s a much riskier vehicle so the insurance is unwilling to cover it under the same policy.)  SO when the Glass-Stegal act was overturned in 1999, the fact that investment banks could merge with savings banks wasn’t just bad because it allowed for bigger corporations, verging on monopolies, with increased money and power: the overturning of Glass-Stegal in 1999 also meant that NOW the government/FDIC/tax payers’ money IS in fact still left responsible to cover savings banks’ losses, even though the savings banks can now be playing with your savings money in much higher-risk investment scenarios/gambles purely for their own benefit, and when the high-risk scenarios/gambles pay off for the banks, the winnings are kept by the bank company.  But when the high-risk gambles lose, the banks have no worries because the government is still responsible to insure people.  A totally fucked up situation, and nobody seemed to fight it much while the banks were winning their gambles, but of course gamblers don’t win all the time, and the big gambles eventually lost big, and cost the tax payers hundreds of billions.  The fact that the banks now knew they’d be protected by the government (and deemed “too big to fail”) probably psychologically even made the banks gamble bigger than they knew was smart – what did they care?  If they won, they kept the money, and if/when they eventually lost, the public would pay.
At least that’s my understanding of it based on some Wikipedia pages.  This FDIC aspect wasn’t discussed in Inside Job, and I may be wrong about my current understanding.”

… More to come

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is this legal?



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