…to going out there and getting this whole thing started.
More today from culled future contact worthy people who comment on Krugman’s column in the NYTimes… http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/16/opinion/krugman-why-inequality-matters.html?hp&rref=opinion&_r=0
From RLS in Virginia, on an only scantily covered topic- given all the news that’s fit to ignore:
“Six hundred corporations are privy to the details of the secret Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement, yet the Obama administration has kept Congress and the public in the dark. Only 5 of the 29 chapters have to do with trade. If the TPP is approved it will allow multinational corporations to offshore millions of jobs and ban “Buy America” policies.
The TPP will allow drug companies to extend their patents. Developing countries will be denied access to generic drugs and prices will go up for everyone else. It will erode protections in domestic laws and give radical new powers to multinationals on labor issues, environmental and safety standards, land-use rules, public health, food safety, financial regulations, Internet freedom, and more.
From Public Citizen: “TPP would limit how signatory countries may regulate foreign firms operating within their boundaries, with requirements to provide them greater rights than domestic firms. The leaked text reveals a two-track legal system, with foreign firms empowered to skirt domestic courts and laws to directly sue TPP governments in foreign tribunals. The tribunals would be staffed by private sector lawyers who rotate between acting as ‘judges’ and representing corporations suing governments.”
Lori Wallach of Public Citizen calls the TPP a “corporate Trojan horse.” Her interview with Democracy Now:
But wait, there’s more, from Doug Broom of Vancouver- and it doesn’t say but I’m assuming it’s B,C. and not Washington state- not that it makes much difference. After all, the capital of Canada is (drum roll), mostly American, eh?
“Karl Marx, an admirer of the creativity of capitalism, predicted it would inevitably result in even-increasing concentration of wealth as workers’ wages fell, the surplus value of their labour expropriated by the wealthy, abetted by globalization (imperialism).
For a while, capitalism was saved from itself by unionism, the welfare state, the extension of voting rights, and anti-trust laws. But since the 80s, unfettered capitalism has run amok, with results that Marx presciently foretold: more and more wealth concentrated in fewer and fewer hands as a third to half of Americans live provisionally, marginalized, excluded.
The American labour movement is collapsed, The U.S. welfare state, rudimentary at its apogee, is gutted (Obama must veto any cuts to u.i. or food aid.) Politics is monetized and corporatized. “Money speaks” used to be the greatest insult to a politician, now it is a commonplace reality expanded by the Supreme Court. Edward Snowden revealed that even the intelligence/surveillance secret state now has corporate partners.
Once relatively classless, the U.S. is now the 96th least equal country on earth, its class stratification far greater than Europe’s.
Studies on social movements show their success in making claims is proportionate to their militancy. Rise up. Fight back. Occupy before you lose your country. There are 1.1 million homeless schoolchildren, and the Times brilliantly told the story of one girl, Dasani. Tell more stories of the victims.”
And now, Ron Zaudke of Prescott AZ.-
Who exactly is opposing the discussion of income and wealth inequality, now worse than the Gilded Age? The same group of far-right ideologues and financial predators who designed, financed , and executed the largest upward redistribution of wealth in the nation’s history: the deregulated financial industry, our poor victimized CEO class, the Murdoch media empire, a few dozen Koch-financed, tax-exempt propaganda factories pretending to be engaged in “social welfare activities”. Plus the usual in-it-for-a-buck conservative punditocracy. All reciting the same “class warfare” talking points they’ve been using for thirty years. And none of whom has any more credibility than climate change deniers hired by the fossil fuel industry.
Meredith in NYC (I assume) cuts to the chase:
“A definition of populism is ….”supporting the rights and power of the people in their struggle against the privileged elite.” It’s almost un American to talk frankly about elites. What’s holding the US back is the American myth of a classless society, based on opportunity for all. We can’t admit we even have a privileged elite. That’s so old world Europe.
Yet most of Europe today has less of a wealth gap than the US. But how they accomplish this is never discussed on our news media and rarely by opinion writers. They would have to address forbidden topics –higher wealth taxes, govt regulation of business, and subsidies for job training and education. etc.
The 1 percent use our myths about class and elites in their favor to set the terms of our media reporting on the wealth gap and so influence voters and candidates And that’s even before the issue of their campaign donations. Thus the Great Wealth Transfer stays on it’s conveyer belt away from us and upward. The real remedies are labeled too liberal and even anti American.
But what’s really anti American is the concentration of wealth at the tip top. Which our supreme court has aided and abetted with Citizens United. Could our Court do anything so destructive to our democracy? Yes.
We need a new Un American activities committee, to investigate not the Communists of old, but the current elite ruining the living standards and security of millions. All in the name of freedom.”