"The next president won’t be able to deliver
another era of good times unless he or she manages to tackle the
longer-term trends that underlie today’s economic
disappointment: a collapsing health care system and inexorably
us please be real: whoever mumbles the oath of office up there on the
podium in 2017, whether it’s Clinton or the interchangeably Bozoesque
figures currently piling one by one out of the GOP’s clown car to
contend with her, we can count on more of the same: more futile wars,
more giveaways to the rich at everyone else’s expense, more erosion of
civil liberties, more of all the other things Obama’s cheerleaders
insisted back in 2008 he would stop as soon as he got into office. As
Arnold Toynbee pointed out a good many years ago, one of the hallmarks
of a nation in decline is that the dominant elite sinks into senility,
becoming so heavily invested in failed policies and so insulated from
the results of its own actions that nothing short of total disaster
will break its deathgrip on the body politic. John
Donald Trump can holler all he wants about how Crazy
is a socialist. But he (and the super Pacs) won’t be able to distract
voters by digging up scandals in his past. Nor will Trump be able to
portray him as a corporate stooge." Steve
Prediction: America will peak with the 2016 election.
just because of the insanity of 20 GOP presidential candidates. Truth
is most are hustlers, not presidential timber. Jeb Bush flip-flopping
on his brother’s foreign policy was total incoherence. Rand Paul? Marco
Rubio? Long shots. Hillary Clinton? Not incoherent, just running
silent. The only coherent candidate is Bernie Sanders. Too good to be
true. So special-interest billionaires will do everything possible to
use him to destroy Clinton. No good news ahead. Paul
Republicans have, at least since Reagan, made dog-whistle
appeals to racists, but they showed their true
nominating Trump: He's anti-immigrant, anti-woman, anti-poor, anti-gay,
cruel, overtly rails against Mexicans, Muslims, and appeals to white
supremacists. Trump has propelled a resurgence of the alt-right and
Elections are rigged: the two
party duopoly has failed to select candidates who have favorable
ratings. Selecting the least worst candidate will maintain our course
...in the wrong
direction. Media keeps major issues off
the debate stage, and focuses on the race, not real issues. Republicans
have been leaders in voter suppression, and gerrymandering. With SCOTUS removal of the Voting Rights Act,
and Citizens United, Trump might even
As working people lose wages and benefits including pensions,
health care, Republicans continue to bust unions, cut Social Security or privatize it, and
don't believe that health care should be a right for everyone.
Republican States that would not accept Medicaid funding will have an
estimated 17,000 preventable deaths. We should have a new social
contract, like FDR's Second Bill of Rights, his answer to the threat of
A profitable industry has grown up extracting wealth from the poor: sub-prime mortgages, check
cashing, rent-to-own, predatory loan companies, and casinos,
Republicans have consistently opposed regulation that could protect
consumers, want to cripple the CPFB, and, paid off by bank lobbyists,
would repeal Dodd-Frank. Thanks to Republicans, being poor is
If Trump succeeds in repealing the estate
tax (aka the 'death tax'), he and other billionaires will reap huge
windfalls. The Walton family (Walmart owners)
alone stands to gain estimated $32 billions. How much will Trump family
gain ? Although there is no evidence that prosperity follows,
Republican tax cuts or their flat-tax consistently reward the wealthy.
Income inequality is at
the root of many problems: campaign finance, bought government, media distortion, market
failure, social pathology, corruption, systemic malfunction, class
warfare, policy error. It has a natural tendency to advance, and
renders most people powerless. It results in an economy that is
unstable, unfair, and unsustainable. It's why government often does the
Continuing the Bush-Cheney path, Trump, declared his intention
to be a war criminal by promising more extreme
torture. Rebecca Gordon in her book “Mainstreaming Torture”
recounts, torture in reality has generated desired falsehoods to
support wars, created lots of enemies rather than eliminating them,
encouraged and directly trained more torturers, promoted cowardice
rather than courage, degraded our ability to think of others as fully
human, perverted our ideas of justice, and trained us all to pretend
not to know something is going on while silently supporting its
continued practice. None of that can help us much in any other ethical
pursuit. (from David
Swanson's review). Republicans
refuse to close the shameful prison at Guantanamo.
At the insistence of Republicans, we are embarked on a
trillion dollar project to renew and deliver a new generation of nuclear weapons. General Lee Butler, the last
commander of the Strategic Air Command, which was armed with nuclear
weapons remarked we have so far survived the nuclear age “by some
combination of skill, luck, and divine intervention, and I suspect the
latter in greatest proportion.” Further, he said: "It is my profound
conviction that nuclear weapons did not, and will not, of themselves
prevent major war. To the contrary, I am persuaded that the presence of
these hideous devices unnecessarily prolonged and intensified the Cold
War. In today's security environment, threats of their employment have
been fully exposed as neither credible nor of any military utility."
Trump asked “If we have nuclear weapons, why don't we use them ?”
Trump and the Republicans push to spend more on armaments and
the military because in many Congressional
districts it is a jobs program. Our economy
depends on the ability to kill, maintain the world's largest military
for empire, and fight the
forever war. It is not about the security of the people.
Trump, like Republican leadership, is in denial of the science
of climate change. If we somehow manage
to avoid a nuclear fire storm, the planet will fry slowly. CO2 levels
already exceed safe levels at 400 ppm (and increasing) and it persists
for centuries. Glaciers and ice caps are melting, forest fires
expanding. Droughts, storms, floods, rising sea levels, ocean
acidification, fisheries collapse, forest clearing, species extinction
will all contribute to the destruction of nature. Republicans deny the
problem. Trump says it is a hoax.
NASA climate scientist James Hansen forecast a possible
10-foot rise in sea levels before the end of the century. One-third of
Florida's population lives below this level, as do more than 700,000
residents of New York City. So do millions in major coast cities. That
would force evacuation of hundreds of millions. Expect mass migrations
from flooded coasts, storm devastation, deserts or uninhabitable areas.
Danger of nuclear war, particularly between India and Pakistan, will
grow. Grandchildren will find the climate increasingly hostile. The end
times will not be pretty. Republicans
will bring it on much faster.
For many reasons democracy
doesn't work in the U.S. It cannot co-exist with extreme income inequality. Anyway, people are
distracted, more concerned with day-to-day
affairs: taking care of their children, paying rent, doing a job so
may not take time to vote or even think about what's at stake in an
election. After all, election day is not a holiday. Newspapers
have shrunk and so has
circulation. Also corporate media
doesn't profit from good information or even basic fact-checking, many
voters are not well informed.
When the Supreme Court
rolled back the voting rights act, it freed
Republican States to suppress minority vote
in their already
gerrymandered districts. Citizens United
opened elections to floods of cash. Voting machines
can be hacked so that results are not verifiable. Debates are limited
by the two-party monopoly. Dirty tricks go unpunished. The Federal
Elections Commission has been crippled by partisan gridlock. The
result: elections don't meet basic standards, don't reflect the
will of the people, and they certainly don't change much.
This year, the two leading candidates have generally
unfavorable ratings, so that will
also tend to keep depoliticized voters at home.
When we vote for the President,
we also get an agenda. Probably you will not
agree with any particular candidate on all issues, and it
probably is not the will of the people, but that is how the system
works now and it is why you probably won't be entirely satisfied
with ANY of the choices. Neither party is for peace, war clouds are gathering. Neither party is for
The good news is that the Supreme
Court score is four to four,
so it will be more difficult for it to call an election...as it did for
Florida. Republicans would like another
Scalia to put their thumb on the scale. After all SCOTUS decided that
corporations are people whose only purpose is profits for shareholders
and that they may spend as much dark money as they like to buy
elections. Republicans want to continue that.
We should, at least, make all candidates pledge that they will do what they say and
obey the law. When elected, the President is responsible to the Congress, and any failure to allow
oversight ought to trigger immediate impeachment. We do not (yet)
have a dictator or a king. There is, however, reason to think that the
U.S. is ready for Fascism.
Notably, Republicans tend to
serve the wealthy not the people. So do
Democrats. The business of Congress is
increasingly about fund raising,
not policy. SCOTUS enabled the
Congress to be responsible to the
funders, not the people.
The wealthy want to dodge taxes, and
especially to end the estate tax (aka the 'death tax' by
Republicans) which only applies to the top 1%. Its elimination will
mean billions to the families of
Trump, Walton, the Kochs, Sheldon
Adelson and others.
Trump's determination to eliminate the inheritance tax could alone make
his Presidency worth
billions. The Walton family would personally
save many billions, so
would the Koch brothers, or Sheldon Adelson. …. It makes sense that
back Trump. Like subprime mortgages, casinos, payday loans, bank
bailouts this is yet another way to shift the burden to more ordinary
Their Republican Congressmen will facilitate that by rolling-back
Dodd-Frank, the CFPB, and preventing a renewed Glass-Steagle. Already
the Republican Congress has committed to bailing out banks again when
they get in trouble. Bernie is right, the billionaires have won. We
have lemon socialism.
Many of our largest corporations pay either no taxes or, like
GE, have negative tax rates, but they still complain and States compete to see who can give them the most
Republicans, being a largely a
Party of Confederates, would
great resurgence of the Southern Plantation economy, or even a new aristocracy
Republicans backed by the very wealthy
often favor a flat sales tax,
sometimes called in an Orwellian sense the 'Fair
Tax'.. The flat
tax would reduce
rates dramatically for
the wealthy, so it is extrmemly regressive. Repeal of the estate tax
would be a bonanza for billionaires...like Trump..
The economy does not function
well when there is
extreme income inequality. Tax
unearned income instead of wages. A stiff
graduated tax, inheritance tax, and a
financial transaction tax can damp down inequality and also guard
against an aristocracy. Tax polluters
with a carbon tax. Proceeds can
strengthen the social safety net.
Science is the best source of
fact. Human caused climate
degradation is a looming catastrophe. Make peace with nature because we
are killing it. An extinction event is underway.
The Constitution Preamble reads: "to promote the
welfare", but Republican policy has not
shown much consideration for that.
Torture is criminal. The
Geneva Convention is the law. The U.S. does not obey it. Trump said he
would make it 'much worse'.
War is not a substitute for
diplomacy. Middle East Wars have produced chaos, mass migrations, and
blowback for us. We are not
safer. We have a
military-industrial-homeland-security-prison-Congressional complex that
finds fear and paranoia profitable, but freedom and civil liberties
will be lost if they get their way.
Nuclear weapons are a dire threat,
and the trillion dollar new round of nukes is a
violation of treaties we have
signed. The best we can hope for is that they are never used.
"All of the leading
presidential candidates openly and nonchalantly endorsed using
nuclear weapons against Iran unless Iran abandons its right to
enrich uranium under the non-proliferation treaty, to which Iran is
a signatory (unlike nuclear-armed Israel, India, and US puppet
Pakistan)....What is moral degeneracy if it is not using nuclear
weapons to murder masses of innocent civilians and spread deadly
radioactivity over vast areas merely in order to force a country to
do as we order? If this isn't barbarism, what is barbarism?" Paul
Craig Roberts 6/8/2007
Did Jeb, as Governor of Florida, behave legally in his
brothers Presidential election ?
Was Jeb a strong advocate for privatizing schools ? Is
a good idea to privatize schools ? Have plutocrats benefited
schools ? Should schools be for profit ?
Is it an accident that bank bailouts occur more
when a Bush is in office ?
What about Neil Bush ?
Have the Bush's favored fascism
? ... or was it only Prescott ? Are the Bush s
corporate supremacists ?
What are the connections of the Bush s to the
military-industrial complex ?
For a long time they have had a close relation to the Pentagon and
magnificently. How about the Carlyle group ?
Did Jeb's brother compromise civil liberties ? with
universal surveillance, renditions, acceptance of torture,
using Guantanamo to avoid
Was W's administration really a 'wrecking crew' ? Polluters got a free pass. He
pointless wars. Using the same neocon advisers, would his brother do
more of the same ?
Is there cause for alarm that Bush senior was head of
the CIA ?
As our secret government, does the CIA
actually pick our presidents ?
See Presidential Puppetry: Obama, Romney and Their Masters by Andrew
Kreig (Jul 5, 2013)
What about 9/11 ? Was there
Saudi connection ? Why did W resist an investigation ?