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Justice Stevens: Citizens United “giant step in the wrong direction”, calls for overturning

When a former Supreme Court Justice speaks out, essentially calling his former colleagues just short of dishonest, it’s worth taking note. Justice John Paul Stevens is angry at the Court’s Citizens United decision and the more recent decision in McCutcheon and is calling for a constitutional amendment to overturn the decisions.

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Loopholes

In honor of tax day, check out these corporate loopholes. And, then, send your check with a non-smiley face on the envelope to the IRS.

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The CEO Should Get Whatever Pay He Wants IF…

You know, every year, I get all hot and bothered around this time because there is always a flood of breathless articles about the stupendous rise in CEO pay and benefits. And I know a lot of good people who spend inordinate amounts of time trying to get shareholders to approve resolutions to have some “say on pay” or some other meaningless statement about what the pigs at the trough are pocketing. But, at the end of the day, I think it’s time just to say: give the CEO whatever pay he wants IF…and I’ll tell you what the “If” is in a sec.

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Understanding Sebelius

A few days ago, I was having a drink with a friend and we ended up talking about healthcare (don’t you wish you were there for that fun, huh?). I said, “well, she should have been fired long ago.” Not claiming any kind of inside info, it felt so obvious — and, yet, the defense of her tenure on the part of ACA supporters is really dumb.

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Is the Obama Administration Blocking International Efforts to Stop Corporate Tax Avoidance?

Well, unfortunately, and not surprisingly, the answer to this question is “yes”. I’ve taken this headline almost verbatim from Citizens for Tax Justice (CTJ) which has been trying to stop this scam for a long time–and is getting no help, and, in fact, the opposite from the president.

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Shell Game: The Republican $1.7 Trillion Tax Cut for Corporations & The Rich

In a way, I’m not sure this is news, in that Republicans shilling for big corporations and the very wealthy is not new but old (and throw in the clutch of Democrats who are willing shills for that scam). But, there it is: the Dave Camp shell game that, at the end of the day, will be a $1.7 trillion tax give away to the very wealthy and corporations.

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Businessman: Raising Minimum Wage is “an existential threat to the business model” he uses

Workers are just human fodder, who just gum up the works and get in the way of the dreams of some tin-pot “small business” owner, just a glorified term for a guy running a restaurant. That’s the view of a low life who is whining about the proposal to raise the minimum wage for waiters, a minimum wage that was set much lower than the minimum wage for everyone else because of the power of the restaurant lobby. And it’s indicative of the philosophy underlying the opposition to hiking the minimum wage (a very meek and mild proposal, as an aside).

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Ryan’s Budget: More Welfare For The Rich

Just so we’re clear, and this bears repeating even if it is obvious, the richest people in the country are going to, once again, be the gift of more welfare-for-the-rich under the tax proposals of House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan–while, just by the numbers, lower income people will get hit with a tax increase. Don’t you love this system?

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About Those 30 Million

I hate to sound churlish but a short observation: does it bother anyone else that the celebration by liberals/progressives, all in tune with the White House messaging machine, about the 7 million-plus who enrolled so far in the Affordable Care Act system sort of ignores the fact that 30 million people still have no coverage, people who would have been covered if we had pushed for a single-payer “Medicare for All” system, not a system that is a windfall for insurance companies? Just wondering.

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“The Winter Soldier”, My Lai And Hollywood (Willful?) Amnesia

Did anyone else cringe when she or he saw the subtitle of the new Captain America movie: “The Winter Soldier”. From what I’ve seen floating around, the movie is a deep-dive into violence, warfare and triumphant patriotism (please correct me if I’m wrong), the very impulses and emotions that just mire us in bloody crisis after bloody crisis. And that is the precise opposite of a more recent historic meaning of “The Winter Soldier”.

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America’s public infrastructure spending is “Daft”, guess who says that?

“With the economy weak and borrowing cheap, it is daft that America’s public infrastructure spending is at a 20-year low, even as the country’s roads, bridges and dams are rated D+ by the American Society of Civil Engineers.” A new free-trade lover-turned-liberal superhero? Left-wing irrelevant magazine? Progressive think-tank looking for foundation money? Nope…straight from the mouths of The Economist.

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Don’t Extend Those…Extenders

With tax day looming, I’ll try to throw in more on the crazy world of tax policy — which usually means how corporations and rich people are taking us for a ride courtesy of very willing politicians. Today, it’s all about tax extenders.

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A Worthy Budget

Most of the nonsense coming from Congress about budgets — and that nonsense is particularly of a Republican Party flavor but also emanating from Democrats — touts more tax breaks and tax cuts for business. It’s entirely crazy. The one island of sanity comes from the Progressive Caucus.

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That Sucking Sound? It’s The 73 Billion-Dollar Corporate Robbery of The States

What I really like about corporate skullduggery is that at least it’s usually done with big numbers, as in billions of dollars. Nothing on the cheap (except, of course, when it comes to paying workers). In another installment of “how can we fill our coffers, pay our CEO millions of dollars and fleece the public” comes today’s news: Corporate-based America is robbing the states of billions of dollars by dodging taxes.

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A Tiff Among The Elites

A bit amusing. The bankrollers of the Republican Party (and the Democratic Party as well) are pissed…at the Republican Party. They were made for each other.

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Justice Dept Mislead Public on Mortgage Fraud Probes, Eviscerated By Inspector General

No one is going to be surprised by this news. It was pretty evident by the facts on the ground: The Justice Department has not been telling the truth about its mortgage fraud investigations and prosecutions. This pretty serious allegation has considerable weight given that it comes not from some blogger or analyst but directly from the Department’s own Inspector General.

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