What happens when the tea party goes to Washington

What happens when the tea party goes to Washington

Dave Brat wants to bring libertarian economics to the U.S., and double-down on 33 miserable years of Reaganomics. Yesterday, fresh off his primary upset of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, the Tea Partying Brat was interviewed by MSNBC’s Chuck Todd. Todd asked the Ayn Rand-inspired Koch Brothers-funded economics professor, “Where are you on the minimum wage? Do you believe in it, and would you raise it?”

After stumbling for a bit, Brat replied, “Minimum wage, no, I'm a free market guy. Our labor markets right now are already distorted from too many regulations. I think CATO estimates there's $2 trillion of regulatory problems and then throw Obamacare on top of that, the work hours is 30 hours a week. You can only hire 50 people. There's just distortion after distortion after distortion and we wonder why our labor markets are broken.”

So, not only did Brat say he doesn’t believe in the minimum wage, he also implied that he’s in favor of continuing the Reaganomics policies that have destroyed our country, and destroyed the middle-class. Believe it or not, there was a time in America when the middle-class was booming, and when libertarian economics was just a pipe dream.

Before Reagan came to town, it was still possible for high school graduates to get a job right out of school, work hard, and make a life for themselves and their families. rosperity wasn’t just for the millionaires and billionaires; it was for everyone. For years, it was assumed that with a little hard work, you could live a very comfortable life no matter where you fell in the social ladder.

But then came the 1980’s and Reaganomics. Suddenly, all the economics talk was about “free markets”, “too much regulation”, and turning America into a libertarian paradise. That led to the unprecedented era of Reagan deregulation, which directly led to the stock market crash of 1987, which, until 2008, was the worst crash our country had seen since 1929.

And while Reagan was busy deregulating America, the predictable result was that the middle-class was becoming smaller and smaller, while the wealthy elite were getting richer and richer. 34 years of Reaganomics has gutted the middle-class, and destroyed an American economy that once worked for everyone.

The income gap in America has widened exponentially since Reagan took office and implemented the so-called “Reagan Tax Cuts.” Between 1947 and 1980, income gains were shared fairly equally between the wealthiest Americans and everyone else. But then everything changed.

The millionaires and billionaires began to take home more of our nation’s income gains, while income gains for working-class Americans flattened out. In 1980, the top 1 percent of Americans controlled 10% of annual U.S. income. As of 2007, the top 1 percent controlled 23.5% of annual U.S. income, and that number is only getting higher.

Between 1979 and 2012, the percentage increase in salary growth for the median American worker was just 5%, while growth for millionaire and billionaire executives was off the charts. As result, the share of the nation’s income going to the middle-class has been in a freefall for the past 30 years. In fact, even Dave Brat acknowledged that while American productivity has been off the charts for the past 30 years, wages have remained stagnant.

According to the Center for Economic and Policy Research, the federal minimum wage should actually be around $22 an hour if it had kept up with increases in worker productivity over the past three decades. Right now, 8.4% of Americans consider themselves “lower class.” That’s the highest percentage of Americans who consider themselves lower class EVER.

For the past 34 years, America has seen a continuous erosion of the middle-class, while witnessing a boom for the millionaires and billionaires. What we are left with today is an America that Reaganomics built, and that Kochtopus-funded Ayn Rand-inspired economics professor Dave Brat, and the rest of his Tea Partying friends, want to preserve.

America did just fine for hundreds of years before Reaganomics and before Tea Partiers like Dave Brat were running around, preaching free markets and deregulation. Today, America may work for the wealthy elite, but it’s not working for everyone else.

It’s time to say enough is enough, and stop letting Tea Partying libertarians drive the agenda in Washington. We need to restore the economic policies of the 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s that allowed all Americans to have an equal shot at success.


DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 19 weeks 2 days ago

Wow! Brat sure does live up to his name... Just like Boehner and Weiner.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 19 weeks 2 days ago

I get your drift, Marc. Boehner & Weiner... Hah!

Thom says "We need to restore the economic policies of the 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s that allowed all Americans to have an equal shot at success." Yeah Thom, good luck with that. - AIW

sandlewould's picture
sandlewould 19 weeks 2 days ago

Brat...well, today on Thom's show, he interviewed Lee Fong (I think) who said Brat won because he campaigned like Eliz. Warren. Watch Out! Remember how Scott Walker campaigned on the opposite of what he intended to do once elected. If we are still so stupid we believe a word that comes out of their mouths, we deserve what we get. How did Brat win? By lying his way into office pretending he hated banksters and DIE!bold. Lets not forget what's really in control at the ballot box (which no longer exist) ...the voting machine! BTW; proof that Brat is in bed with, if not in love with the Banksters: http://faculty.rmc.edu/dbrat/bbandt.html

Hi Alice...I agree. With 7+ billion people on the planet, we will drive ourselves and the planet to extinction all the faster with a "new" New Deal. Even with implementation of 100% renewable energy, unless we learn to live much like we did in college, for example, All of us sharing...EVERYTHING, or unless a lot of us die off, We are screwed. Not negativity, just common sense. We need to start addressing how to change the paradigm if we want to save this planet instead of screaming for ‘fair’ wages which are desperately needed but not realistically sustainable, the rebuilding of infrastructure which also is desperately needed but unsustainable (how ‘bout a total ‘rethink’ of what infrastructure is needed for local survival and sustainable global infrastructure which is shared). Paying living wages around the world would lead first to increased demand, then to world-wide shortages, then to inflation, then to another need to increase wages...and so-on. How 'bout the great society? An end to money, guaranteed min. access to resources necessary for modestly comfortable survival, etc.? Capitalism and endless growth are UNsustainable. Time to reinvent the deal, not just do the not-so-new deal over again.

JohnLemessurier's picture
JohnLemessurier 19 weeks 2 days ago

A Democratic Congress and Democratic president (Jimmy Carter) enacted the Monetary Control Act of 1980 which removed all remaining controls on interest rates and repealed the federal law prohibiting usury (note that sky-high interest rates and ruinous predatory lending have been with us ever since). It was the 1980 legislation that took the lid off banking and doomed the savings and loan industry, the mainstay that used to provide housing loans and home mortgages. The thrifts were able to raise capital because they were allowed to pay a half percent more in interest to depositors. Bankers wanted them out of the way. The Democratic party obliged.

Deregulation was bipartisan. It is entirely speculative to suppose that, had Carter been reelected, the deregulation of banking, including the relaxation of mortgage standards, would have ceased. When the Democrats regained the presidency in 1993, banking deregulation continued, culminating in the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act, which had split commercial banks from investment banks, and in the rejection of regulation of the new derivatives, notably credit-default swaps. Robert Rubin and Lawrence Summers, Clinton’s principal economic advisers, were steadfast supporters of banking deregulation. They are both Democrats.

P.S. Stop blaming Ayn Rand. Blame those who co-opt her extremist philosophy supporting creativity and productivity to instead encourage their own greed. They are the true Ayn Rand villains.

Kend's picture
Kend 19 weeks 2 days ago

The problem us Obamanomics isn't working either. Brat does have somewhat of a point and I think you are going to see more people leaning right exspecially the ones that have been out of work for a while or a twenty something with a huge student debt and a room in their parents basement. Sooner or later you lose hope and want change. This is very much like it was just before Reagan got in wasn't it.

Mark J. Saulys's picture
Mark J. Saulys 19 weeks 2 days ago

Thom, your colleagues are liars. You said nobody can lie on the radio for three hours a day. Limbaugh, Hannity, O'Reilly, Coulter, etc. have been for decades. They are, in fact, shills for big business. Every radio talk show host knows they can make much more money doing the right wing talking points than as a progressive. I recommend Toxic Sludge is Good for you: Lies, Damn Lies and the Public Relations Industry by Sheldon Rampton and John Stauber, if you haven't already.

What's really amazing is that most working people will accept Brat as an authority on economics and vote to cut their own throats. Just illustrates what the Association of Ethical Economists - a group or caucus within the American Economic Association (AEA) - says, that Economics is not a science but a religion - and economists, the priesthood that is called out by policymakers to bless whatever policies are desired by them and their cronies.

ken ware's picture
ken ware 19 weeks 2 days ago

After reading your comment, I have to ask the question, what makes you think the rest of the World is interested in sharing anything? We have absolutely no influence on any up and coming production power houses like China and India. Do you actually think China is concerned with saving the World, while becoming the production hot house of the World. Here on the West coast of America we are paying the price of higher levels of air pollution finding their way here on the trade winds that blow west from China. L.A. and California have enacted good pollution laws as well as those enforced by Washington and have had a half way decent effect on our pollution, and now we are faced with dealing with the pollution caused by a country, not so long ago as being perceived as a political foe, and may well be seen that way in the not so far future. Their main concern is growing somewhat of a middleclass as to appease their billion plus population from rebelling and bring their present political base down. The only thing that keeps their populace from imploding politically is they believe they have a shot at having the material wealth of our perceived middleclass here in America and Western Europe! I do not think Hartmann's point reached any further then our own nation and taking care of our people and that in itself will be a monumental goal to achieve. At this point in our history the idea of trying to achieve goals outside of our borders is ludicrous in itself. Our political system is in chaos due to the Supreme Court’s decision that Corporations are the same as the individual American voter and money is free speech in the Citizens United case has destroyed any hope of a fair and just political system. As far as the infrastructure goes, if we do find a means to "fix" the problems we are faced with, we will be faced with a crumbling and antiquated system to move people and goods around our nation. To hell with worrying about the rest of the World, we do not have the time nor the resources to concern ourselves with matters outside of our physical borders. I personally believe the billions of dollars we are sending to other countries should be spent here on resolving our needs. I would go even further to say we should cancel and nullify all and any free trade agreements we have entered into at the costs of losing jobs here. How many free trade agreements do you think China or Germany have signed that endanger the workforce of their respected countries. I believe the answer is very close to none. As far as minimum wages and Unions go, take a good look at the German workforce and the number of their workers that are engaged in unions and I think it is about 60% and that number also influences the wages and benefits of none union companies and industries in Germany. So to think minimum wages that are linked to a higher standard of living for even the lowest skilled workers in unststainable, just does not work out to any logic when comparing us to another country that is a Democracy! Even the idiots that are profit driven must realize rebuilding the roads, bridges and waterways is a win - win resolution for everyone. Just one idea to think about when stating a higher standard of living and rebuilding America is unsustainable, we might take a look at the German economy and infrastructure, because after W.W. II Germany was rebuilt in our image during that time period and it is still the strongest economy in Europe. Comparing ourselves to a nation like China is not realistic, unless you want to reinvent a form of communism/capitalism run by a non-democratic political system. I realize I have limited my explanation(s) on why we need to reinvest in our country and that we need living wages that are sustainable, but this comment is long enough and I have tried to cover the most ground with the least words. I will not be able to respond to any rebuttal to my comments due to restraints on my time today. But, I look forward to reading them tomorrow if there are any. K.W.

Kend's picture
Kend 19 weeks 1 day ago

A little off topic but you might want to know. here in Alberta because Keystone Doesn't look like a go. They are building a massive train yard to increase the amount of oil shipped by rail from Canada to the US from 220,000 bpd to 650,000 by 2017. I think you should have went with Keystone it would have been much safer.

ken ware's picture
ken ware 19 weeks 1 day ago

KEND - Glad to see you still speak without thinking your thoughts through. Brat is basically stating there should not be a standard of living tied to minimum wage for workers with lower skills. I do not see how his statements would resonate with young people, those that have been jobless due to the actions of politicians linked to Wall St. and the idea those who have achieved and amassed wealth are any more deserving then those who have not been given the chance due to circumstances beyond their control! Obama has stated several times we need to find a way to help those who owe large debts due to their need to borrow (student loans) to get a degree, while the Republinuts have fought the idea all the way. I am not an Obama fan, but let’s get some of the facts straight when we compare the right wingers and Tea parties and those on the left. Okay! K.W.

Mark J. Saulys's picture
Mark J. Saulys 19 weeks 1 day ago
Quote Kend:

The problem us Obamanomics isn't working either. Brat does have somewhat of a point and I think you are going to see more people leaning right exspecially the ones that have been out of work for a while or a twenty something with a huge student debt and a room in their parents basement. Sooner or later you lose hope and want change. This is very much like it was just before Reagan got in wasn't it.

There has never been "Obamanomics", unprecedented Congressional obstructionism has not allowed a single of his policies to be enacted.

I hope those kids in their parents' basements realize that "all that glitters is not gold" and not want to go "from the frying pan to the fire", as it were - or, for that matter, the adults.

Anyway, I don't think unemployment and student debt cause people to lean right. Those were major impetus for Occupy. Anyone can see that Obama has tried, how many times, to help student debt crisis and unemployment but was blocked by Republicans in the House and Senate.

The strategy of Republicans may, in fact, be to obstruct, sabotage the economy and then blame Obama - successfully, because most people in the U.S. are so ignorant they think the president is the king and have no idea there is a legislature or what it does. Of course, the shills are everywhere to help that strategy along.

ken ware's picture
ken ware 19 weeks 1 day ago

Kend - Keeping your type of oil out of our Country all together would be a safer approach for Americans. The oil going to be shipped to the refineries in Texas are going to be shipped out to the countries in the East like China and other countries in need of fuel for their growing population, not to Americans. You keep forgetting to bring that point out when you speak of the dirtier type of shale oil coming out of Canada. Keep it, it is not for Americans with the exceptions of the Koch Bro.'s and others of their type. America first, every other nation second in my book. Yeah, I am one of those American Patriots that still believe in our Country and the Military as well. A dying breed perhaps, but many of us still remain. K.W.

sandlewould's picture
sandlewould 19 weeks 1 day ago

I remember when Thom announced that Obama was investing in 1000 new hybrid trains...he was hailing it as a Green victory...I knew as soon as the words left his mouth the only reason it happened at all was for the Tar Sands. Scary stuff. Rail Traffic through my little town is around 10-20 trains a day now. Only 4 trains/week are passenger trains. I live ON the OH river.

Kend's picture
Kend 19 weeks 1 day ago

Good to see your back correcting me. are you saying you prefer to get your oil via ship from Nigria, Saudi Arabia, and Venusaula. None of these countries have any environmental ethics at all instead of a clean ethical neighbour like Canada. I am hurt.

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 19 weeks 1 day ago
Quote Kend:Good to see your back correcting me. are you saying you prefer to get your oil via ship from Nigria, Saudi Arabia, and Venusaula. None of these countries have any environmental ethics at all instead of a clean ethical neighbour like Canada. I am hurt.

Kend ~ What is "Venusuala?" The capital city of the planet Venus? Is that the same planet with "Nigria?" Kend you just misspelt 2 countries out of four. That's 50% in your geography test for the day. Stand up and take a bow! Go to the front of the class and stick your head in the "clean ethical" corner. You should feel hurt!

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 19 weeks 1 day ago

Kend ~ As I think Ken was trying to tell you, your oil isn't intended for us anyway. We're just the step bridge to the actual clients. How would you Canadians like to be stepped on?

sandlewould's picture
sandlewould 19 weeks 1 day ago

My perspective is not from a single nationalistic view, German, American, Chinese what have you, but rather from a single global economic perspective. I'm not suggesting China or any other country in the world has any interest in sharing...only that as a global people, Humans must share if we are to survive...20th century American way of life is unsustainable. From the dawn of humanity until FDR's new deal, the population of the planet grew to 2.3 billion, most of that in the VERY recent past. Now it's over 7 billion. In just the last 75 years, the population has more than doubled and grown more than in the history of humanirty up to 1940. As it has been widely reported for years...if everyone on Earth lived as Americans do (did)...it would require 4 Earths. Trouble is, now Everyone wants what America had in the 20th century. Without access to resources that exist multi-nationally, we can't rebuild...and even if we could..if we rebuild conventionally...at what cost to the planet? Think of the fossil fuels/raw materials needed to rebuuild. Most rare earth minerals needed for the electronics/solar technology we need to compete in the global economy going forward are controlled by China. Even with trade policy favoring our labor force, we still have to...well...share resources...even if for a price...and it's the price tag in terms of $$ that kills any hope of long term stability...such as the native peoples of Earth have known for milenia before the rise of capitalism.

ken ware's picture
ken ware 19 weeks 1 day ago

Could you please define what era it was when the peoples of the World came together and shared all its resources in order for everyone to sustain an equal standard or quality of life. All the history I have read during my college days and up until now states or suggests tribes or nations have always been at war with each over natural resources such as water or animals needed to sustain life. Whether it was the plains native Americans or Neanderthals vs our caveman ancestors, they were at war with each other for natural resources. I guess the World is doomed because the Utopia you state we need to sustain life on our planet has never existed. I guess the communal living of the 60's would be a perfect way of living and sustaining life for humans on our world, and as you know, that was a failed experience. I doubt the Utopia you suggest we need to survive in this World has ever existed. Controlled capitalism in my opinion is a good thing.

sandlewould's picture
sandlewould 19 weeks 1 day ago

Can't say this, as you say, 'Utopia' has never existed, nor could I say it could ever exist... would have to consult tribal Elders of indigenous peoples around the world...as they are plainly the most qualified to attest. Much of the ancient folklore as well as history seems to suggest that repeated die-offs of advanced civilizations seem to keep happening because we can't seem to learn the lesson of living w/in our means as a species. Just because we are "doomed" in the current incarnation of things as it were, doesn't mean we are doomed eternally. The logic is simple; exponential human population growth + finite resources = fewer and fewer resources/capita. In short, the petri dish is full, the medium is exhausted...what are we going to do about it? Fight over it like Barbarians or share it like enlightened beings? We are all connected. We are one global people. We can shift paradigms and cooperate, or die in a perpetual cycle of competition. 'Utopia' or 'Distopia', neither will have anything to do with it. Capitalism, by it's very nature, can't be controlled...because the very forces that try to regulate it are undone by capitalism itself. It is as old as modern civilization. Just ask Richard Wolff https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TZU3wfjtIJY ...

Kend's picture
Kend 19 weeks 1 day ago

Thanks for pointing that out Danne. Funny think is I used spell check on my ipad. I wil b mor carful nest Tyme.

After that horrible train crash in Quebec moving oil by rail doesn't seem like such a good idea. Your right though a lot of Keystone oil would just be passing through. There is a lot of talk up here that the northern gateway pipeline is going to get approved within a month so I am sure you have nothing to worry about except the trains.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 19 weeks 1 day ago

Sandlewould, I totally agree with you. If humanity doesn't get it this time, we're doomed. At no point in history has there been so many of us, or the world's resources stretched so thin. I get very tired of these glib references to "Utopia", because like you say, there never has been a "Utopia", nor will there ever BE a "Utopia". And whenever anyone brings "Utopia" into the conversation, it comes across very disingenuous and condescending. They might as well be talking about Santa Claus or the Tooth Fairy. This is serious stuff. And while the Mayan prediction regarding 12-31-12 may not have been accurate in a literal sense, I think that perhaps they were onto something.

Capitalism is uncontrollable by design. It is uncontrollable because, as I stated in an earlier post, laws & regulations come and go, just as the leaders who establish them come and go. To cite a few examples, we've already seen regulations that kept banking honest and the media "balanced" (to the extent that it once was) and tariffs, etc. dismantled by politicians, right before our eyes, while the New Deal morphed into the "Raw Deal" at the hands of the oligarchs. By its very nature, capitalism is a predator's paradise.

So far, "globalism" has been a dirty word in my vocabulary. It has been the banner for corporate fascism, giving oligarchs a free pass to rip us small fry off with impunity while treating Mother Earth like a sewer. Talk about unsustainable! If we are to survive as a species, we must learn how to co-exist peacefully and respectfully across national & cultural lines and share the world's precious resources intelligently, strategically and ethically. It's do-or-die time, folks! We can either do that, or keep quarreling and fighting and plundering our way to extinction. - Aliceinwonderland

P.S. I checked out the Richard Wolff video just enough to determine that it's way too long for me to watch this morning. But I'll be sure to watch it later. Thank you for sharing it!

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 19 weeks 1 day ago
Quote sandlewould:Just because we are "doomed" in the current incarnation of things as it were, doesn't mean we are doomed eternally. The logic is simple; exponential human population growth + finite resources = fewer and fewer resources/capita. In short, the petri dish is full, the medium is exhausted...what are we going to do about it? Fight over it like Barbarians or share it like enlightened beings?

sandlewould ~ Well, the first, easiest thing we can do, is to aggressively and humanitarianly work to reduce the population. The only way that is going to work is by making birth control and abortion readily available and free. Then to encourage it. It seems to me that historically when populations were small they were the most 'Utopian' in nature. It is only when the populations grew out of control that they became war like, greedy, and irresponsible. Only when populations grew without natural restrains did we need to resort to industrialization and start to create the pollution problem we have today. A comparison of native Americans to the Chinese is a perfect example of what happens when the population grows out of control.

The Chinese finally realized the problem; albeit, far too late.

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 19 weeks 1 day ago
Quote Aliceinwonderland:Capitalism is uncontrollable by design. It is uncontrollable because, as I stated in an earlier post, laws & regulations come and go, just as the leaders who establish them come and go. To cite a few examples, we've already seen regulations that kept banking honest and the media "balanced" (to the extent that it once was) and tariffs, etc. dismantled by politicians, right before our eyes, while the New Deal morphed into the "Raw Deal" at the hands of the oligarchs. By its very nature, capitalism is a predator's paradise.

Aliceinwonderland ~ I think you hit the nail on the head, again! Unbridled capitalism is the root behind all the true evil in the world. Communism is no better. Especially the communism of Lenin. I think Loren Bliss said it best, that the ideal--'utopian' if you will--form of government would be a mixture of democracy and socialism. Where the government ultimately controls all; but, is answerable to the votes of the individual. In essence every citizen becomes a voting stockholder of every company. If, or when, that happens, and every citizen controls every company, I think we will be far closer to realizing that 'utopia' that sandlewould is talking about.

Private ownership--especially in national and international corporations--is always going to put profit above everything else and cause more harm than good. The only way to stop that is through socialism. Mom and Pop small businesses can still be controlled by Mom and Pop; however, any business that sprawls out beyond the community where it was founded needs to be publically owned. The way I see it--the way Karl Marx envisioned it--there is no other solution; and, it is an inevitable evolutionary phase of humanities growth. My advice, start removing the taboo from the word socialism. It is, after all, our destiny. Also, don't hate capitalism too much. After all, it is the root of evil that will protect, insure, and give life to the flower of socialism.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 19 weeks 1 day ago

Marc, as usual YOUR post is spot-on. Socialism is the ticket!! But please, no references to "utopia"! If I had my druthers, that word would be excluded from our dialogue altogether. However, socialism is music to my ears.

While the world's problems are varied and complex, their solutions needn't be. With enough incentive behind them, the logistics needn't be either; certainly not beyond our capacity to figure out. If we could send a man to the moon.... well, you get my drift. - AIW

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 19 weeks 1 day ago

Aliceinwonderland ~ Sorry for using the "U" word. "Functional system" would work just as well and do a better job of describing the difference too.

sandlewould's picture
sandlewould 19 weeks 1 day ago

Alice, Marc..

I saw this man, Jacque Fresco ( http://www.thevenusproject.com/ ) on Good Morning America (or it's equivalent) about 40 years ago. He saw then where we were headed and tried to tell the world...but Capitalism, i.e. the love of money, the root of all evil...would have none of it. He’s a bit too inflexible in some of his ideas for me, but these folks, http://www.thezeitgeistmovement.com/ , grew out of his ideas...I sure hope what few of us are left after the LOCO-motive crashes will get on board this new train in some fashion or other! Richard Wolff also has a lecture on bringing Democracy to the workplace; https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL612DCF8ECD397DD0 and the co-op movement. This seems, to me, the only place to start w/in the current paradigm.

As far as humanitarian population control, funny how these Capitalist puppets in government want to rid us of the 3 things that actually DO control population; Education leading to greater opportunity for women, access to birth control and access to safe legal abortion. Why, do you ‘spose? My theory..the way they see it, the more rats you have in a cage fighting over what little air, food and water are left, the more desperate they are, thus more easily controlled and the faster they will kill each other and die off.

I also highly recommend Carolyn Baker’s book, ‘Collapsing Consciously’ carolynbaker.net . She also has a radio show Sunday nights, link on her web page. She is the only person I know of who knows how to find the richness and opportunity in the inevitable without either slipping into glib denial of “Rebuild! Reinvest! Change the Mafia Party from Within!” or the dark negativity of “Fuck it! We’re screwed! I’m gonna go blow up a Gubmint Building!” ...not that we shouldn’t do all we can to re-tool and go green and try to stay involved politically, but we have to change the way we live...Totally! We have to share dwellings, land, electronics, transportation, everything.. or there simply won’t be enough to go ‘round. I’m so tired of people saying they want world peace and an end to war, but they aren’t willing to put all of humanity on the level playing field that is required in order to end the fighting. The ‘American Dream 'should be more like; ‘When I grow up, I can’t wait to have my own efficiency apt. with my family...and my larger community family with which we share art, music, meals if we choose...everything. We must rid ourselves of the very concept of personal ownership. No it AIN’T free love Utopia! It’s simply all our Mother can sustainably afford to give us. Humanity has learned this before..all the native peoples of Earth have known this all along.

I remember seeing a clip of interview with some higher up in Goldman-Sachs or one of the global financial Beasts...I think on the Ed Show? He was shredded by Ed for suggesting that folks were going to have to get used to having a lot less. While I’m sure this man’s vision of “a lot less” was despotic for you and I, in a way, he was right! If all we see in economic inequality are dollars, without thinking through the distribution of all that $$ to it’s logical conclusion, he is right! If all the money in the system was distributed equally tomorrow, in the current paradigm, we’d destroy ourselves and the planet in record time. There is more money in the system than there are resources on which to spend it. We'd have run-away inflation and then, back to sqaure 1...not enough money. We can’t FDR our way out of this one...well, we could, but at what cost to our brothers and sisters in countries like Somalia? Time to stop talking eternal growth and start talking REAL solution. Reaganomics is obviously insane, but given the state of the petri dish, so is the growth aspect of Keynesian economics. If we can’t afford a house, an education, a car...instead of just throwing more money at it, we ought to figure out what we could afford if it were available and make it available. Sharing not only the resources, but the cost of them as well would dramatically increase our quality of life in the long run. We have lost sight of how valuable it is to be an integral part of a larger community while on this suicidal march to individualism. We have much to relearn, much to gain and one hopes, much to look forward to.

chuckle8's picture
chuckle8 19 weeks 1 day ago

Nat Geo Magazine has a series on how to feed the 9 billion people to arrive in the future. This months article say the US farms more fish than beef. Next month's teaser is what motivated me to say something on the blog. It says for next month "Can fertile Africa feed the world?". I have sent money to Africa so they can feed their own. What's up?

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 19 weeks 1 day ago

Sandles, I like your perspective and your vision. Before we can live more sanely and sustainably, we must learn to think differently. Considering some of the posts I've seen here, we've got our work cut out for us. - AIW

sandlewould's picture
sandlewould 19 weeks 1 day ago


I was asking the guy at the Kroger seafood counter why we have farm raised cat fish from China. He says it's raised in the US, shipped to China, packaged, then shipped back! We have GOT to change our way of life.

I have no doubt that if Africa wasn’t raped and pillaged by multi-nationals, their fertile land could feed many, don’t know about 9 billion...but...what gives? You do via your donations. What takes?.. the blood diamond market, the rare earth market...the rich countries who exploit Africa and Africans and have since the dawn of time...sadly.

sandlewould's picture
sandlewould 19 weeks 1 day ago

Hi Alice...

I used to be a musician, still am I guess but my passion for writing music seems to be turning to more hands on practical stuff...maybe because music teachers and choir directors and classical vocalists can't make a living anymore. W/out art and music, the skill of critical thought suffers greatly. The arts are the first to go under fascist regimes. Thanks for your support. Hope to meet you one day...for that Tea-N-Toke! :)

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 19 weeks 23 hours ago

Sandles, you sure can make me smile. From ear to ear. Love you... - AIW

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 19 weeks 5 hours ago

sandlewould ~ I finally got to watch that Richard Wolff lecture. Thanks for the link. Great lecture! For anyone else who missed it here is the link again. I highly recommend it.


Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 18 weeks 6 days ago

Marc, Sandles, thank you both for turning us onto that fabulous lecture by economist Richard Wolff! My husband & I just finished listening and were impressed. Mr. Wolff puts it all in such plain English as he describes the bigger picture, explaining how the system's rigged against us, how it got that way, what we've been up against, how it's impacted our lives en masse, what can happen and what we can expect. The guy knows his stuff. It's not always pleasant hearing his message, but we're better off forewarned.

What I find gratifying (and amazing, sometimes even exhilerating) is to hear my hunches and opinions validated by individuals like Richard Wolfe, Noam Chomsky, Thom Hartmann and others. All these guys are more educated than I, with way more knowledge than I possess. Gives me more trust in what my intuition and gut instincts have been telling me. - AIW

Mark J. Saulys's picture
Mark J. Saulys 18 weeks 5 days ago

Kend, we must support Venezuela! We must import our oil from there!

Anyway, they do, in fact, seem to have - or at least did in Chavez' initial governments - environmental concern and consideration. They even had a Ministry of the Environment and a Minister of Environment cabinet post of high value and importance. Chavez was well read about climate change and the environment and was very concerned about it.

Because of international political struggles and power games he couldn't very well dispense with his country's only ace-in-the-hole source of power and self defence, its oil production, as he, no doubt, would've liked to otherwise but that's largely the fault of the U.S.. After the coup attempts and what not he wasn't imagining the danger.

Time to Rethink the War on Terror

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When Eric Holder eventually steps down as Attorney General, he will leave behind a complicated legacy, some of it tragic, like his decision not to prosecute Wall Street after the financial crisis, and his all-out war on whistleblowers like Edward Snowden.

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