Posted on 06 May 2015.
At the end of the day, it doesn’t hurt for voters to ask politicians the family question: would you ask your children, your spouses, or your parents to face the consequences of a policy decision and put themselves in the very world you advocate for? If you are going to vote for war, would you ask your kids to drop what they are doing (even if they had, in the immortal words of a war criminal Dick Cheney “other priorities” when their number came up) and sign up for the battlefield?
And when it comes to the TPP, and recruiting Nike to pimp for you to pass this pile of crap, one can ask the President: would you ask your daughters to work in a Nike factory in Vietnam?
Posted on 06 May 2015.
It must be an interesting conversation to behold between the president and his people who are desperately trying to figure out how to prop up this piece of crap called the Trans Pacific Partnership. I really have some sympathy for these guys: how do you make something palatable without telling lies? There’s the list of ten lies/half-truths that just don’t hold water.
Then, there’s the bullshit about the deal not being negotiated in secret, leading one member of Congress to say “We know when we’re being suckered” and another to say, “My chief of staff who has a top secret security clearance can learn more about ISIS or Yemen than about this trade agreement”.
And, now, actual numbers–these are called FACTS–show that a cookie-cutter version of the TPP has cost the U.S. dearly in jobs.
Got it, solution, pesky facts notwithstanding: there’s always a last ditch claim…TPP will, in fact, end cancer and make everyone slim.
Posted on 04 May 2015.
When it comes down to it, the president has a problem. No one doubts that he is wicked smart. And there’s the rub when it comes to the Trans Pacific Partnership: if he was, say, Sarah Palin-level intelligence, you’d say the whoppers coming out of the White House emanate from a dope. But, if whoppers keep coming from a wicked smart man running the show, you have to say he’s lying.
Secrecy is secrecy. No matter how they want to spin it. And it is having a corrosive effect on the ability of the White House to ram through the TPP because, basically, on the subject of TPP secrecy, the Democrats are calling the president a liar…in nice terms. Silver lining: this could end up killing the putrid deal.
Posted on 01 May 2015.
The robbery of our money by the wealthy and corporations and the placing of a heavier tax burden on regular people is one of the key drivers of class warfare in this country. When corporations and the wealthy hide money and/or use gimmicks to avoid paying a fair share of taxes, we all end up paying more–or the basic services of a decent society collapse.
Bernie Sanders “has been the lone voice in the Senate fighting for legislation that would ensure that corporations and the wealthy pay their fair share,” according to Citizens Tax Justice, the leading voice for tax justice in the nation.
Posted on 30 April 2015.
You’all know what “Fast track” is. I like to think of it as the “Corporations Get More Say Than Congress” Act. And it’s sucking wind, on life support, headed for the trash bin. Hey, just call me an optimist two days in a row, starting with believing Bernie Sanders can win this thing. But, first things first: Fast track ain’t got the votes.
Posted on 29 April 2015.
A couple of years ago, I spent many hours with Bernie Sanders interviewing him for Playboy magazine (the interview was published in October 2013). I’ve just received permission to post unpublished answers from him–just the nature of the editing process, nothing nefarious, but probably only one-third actually saw the light of day–along with the published part.
Before getting into his actual views, a few things. So, there is no doubt where I stand: Literally, my last comment to him was “If you run for President, I will be there for you, okay?” So, I’m there: I’ll do whatever it takes, whatever I can do, to elect him president.
Second, what struck me–and I think what strikes just about any crowd that listens to him, and the reason I think he will get massive support, is that people believe that he is saying what he honestly believes in. He doesn’t need to put together a team of 200 people to tell him what he should believe in–he doesn’t need ideas to be poll-tested. He actually has a set of consistent beliefs.
Posted on 27 April 2015.
I come here not to particularly urge that a baseball owner/executive be idolized but it’s worth noting what the Chief Operating Office of the Baltimore Orioles John Angelos said following protests on Sunday by thousands outraged by the killing of Freddie Gray
Posted on 24 April 2015.
Two years ago, Rana Plaza collapsed in Bangladesh, killing 1,138 garment workers and injuring 2,400 others; many of the injured live today with physical problems that make it hard for them to work, not to mention the grief many of them live with because of loved ones killed in the disaster.
This was murder, plain and simple. The deaths of the 1,138 must be remembered because they were victims of greed, the greed that is the linchpin of the economic system around the world, including the U.S., that places profits before the lives of people.
Posted on 23 April 2015.
Only in the United States of America could there be any possibility, on contemplation, to let two huge companies combine their horrendous, price-gouging service. But, alas for them, it ain’t happening.
Posted on 22 April 2015.
Good for Elizabeth Warren. In a respectful but “I’m not backing down manner,” she’s firing back at the president’s nonsense about TPP. And in her own words on her blog. Take this truth: The Administration says I’m wrong – that there’s nothing to worry about. They say the deal is nearly done, and they are […]
Posted on 22 April 2015.
Just a moment to pause and update everyone: going back to 1968, workers have lost more than $357 billion because of the robbery due to the stagnant minimum wage. Here’s the clock.
Posted on 21 April 2015.
Oh, this is left over from Tax Day–not that 15 companies would even know what Tax Day means. Cuz, even if they rake it in, they don’t pay taxes. How special.
Posted on 20 April 2015.
This Friday will mark the second anniversary of the Rana Plaza mass murder of 1,138 garment workers. I use the word “murder” because the collapse of the eight-story building that housed sweatshop garment factories wasn’t some astonishing surprise. It happened because international garment companies–like Benetton, Primark, Matalan, and Mango –exploited people for huge profits, not caring a whit about their conditions in slave-like conditions half way around the globe; those companies happily pocketed billions of dollars in profits and signed deals year after year with sleazy contractors who operated unsafe, dangerous factories.
After a huge outcry following the collapse, an accord was signed between labor rights advocates, international union representatives and NGOs, on the one hand, and garment companies, on the other hand, calling for payments by the companies to upgrade safety and set up a monitoring scheme to try to prevent future Rana Plaza-like mass murders.
But, even just paying a pittance apparently seems beyond the moral compass of these companies who are stiffing the accord’s budget.
Posted on 17 April 2015.
It is not enough to simply say the deal on “fast track” is a bad one. We need to understand, in the details, why what is being sold as a new “improved” fast track is just utter nonsense.
Posted on 16 April 2015.
There are a ton of bad ideas out there in the world of economic policy–mostly, those are dumb ideas having to do with the complete comfort with class warfare, from “trickle down” to “CEOs are job creators” to so-called “Free trade.” It is one of the great astonishing things that, despite the fact that all […]
Posted on 15 April 2015.
The Trans Pacific Partnership is no laughing matter. It’s a fast track to lower wages, environmental disasters and the undermining of democracy. But, hell, I think maybe the president has a sense of humor on all this. Or, on a serious note, he’s unintentionally showing how weak support is for TPP and the odious “fast […]