We're turning into a nation of peons....

As debt-limit talks stall - the economy hit a wall. Economic growth in the second quarter of this year was less than expected – only 1.3%. Not only that – first quarter economic growth was revised downward showing that our economy grew by less than a half-point at the beginning of the year – just .4%. The reason why our economy stalled is consumer spending which only grew by .1% - the slowest growth rate in two years.

That means are economy is tanking because people don’t have enough money in their pockets to buy stuff, and it's made even worse by a half-million government employees - workers with paychecks - being laid off in the government sector over the past year-and-a-half, mostly in those states with Republican governors. Yet – Republican in the House have not passed ONE jobs bill or stimulus measure to get money back in the hands of Americans to spend it. Instead – we’re all stuck relying on the millionaire and billionaire so-called “job creators” who, like Jeff Emmelt at GE, who just this week announced he's moving his X-ray machine division to China, are busily creating jobs in other countries.

Trickle down economics isn’t working – it’s only turning us into a nation of peons.


DRichards's picture
DRichards 11 years 45 weeks ago

FactCheck.org's Weekly Update for July 29, 2011

New FactCheck Wire Items

Default ‘Danger’ Revisited
The U.S. has been in danger of defaulting before, contrary to what Obama's communications director says.

Romney’s Economic Exaggerations
The presidential candidate made a few false and misleading statements in a campaign appearance in California.

McConnell’s Debt Claim ‘Rejected’
Obama has supported Sen. Reid's proposal, contrary to what Sen. McConnell says.

Medicare Message in Spanish
The DNC criticizes the Ryan Medicare plan in a Spanish-language ad, its first of the 2012 campaign.

‘Spenditol’ Silliness
A spoof of prescription drug ads goes too far in criticizing government spending.

Medicare Misrepresentation
The liberal Patriot Majority distorts Rep. Paul Ryan's Medicare plan.

Obama Inflates Defense ‘Cut’
The president misleadingly says he's cut $400 billion from the defense budget.

Barrasso’s Subsidy Speculation
The senator assumes all employer-provided health insurance will go away when making claims about the cost of subsidies under the health care law.

Mobile and dial-up users click here

DRichards's picture
DRichards 11 years 45 weeks ago

Obama "Will Not Take Yes For An Answer" On Debt Ceiling Debate

Huffington Post notes:

House Speaker John Boehner says ... "Unfortunately, the president would not take yes for an answer," he said. "Even when we thought we might be close on an agreement, the president's demands changed."

While it may be tempting for liberals to write this statement off as mere right-wing positioning, prominent liberal writers agree.

For example, Jeff Cohen writes:

Liberal groups are now mobilizing against the White House and reported deals that would cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid benefits. They accuse President Obama of being weak and willing to “cave” to corporate and conservative forces bent on cutting the social safety net while protecting the wealthy.

Those accusations are wrong.

The accusations imply that Obama is on our side. Or was on our side. And that the right wing is pushing him around.

But the evidence is clear that Obama is an often-willing servant of corporate interests -- not someone reluctantly doing their bidding, or serving their interests only because Republicans forced him to.

Since coming to Washington, Obama has allied himself with Wall Street Democrats who put corporate deregulation and greed ahead of the needs of most Americans...


RichardofJeffersonCity's picture
RichardofJeffer... 11 years 45 weeks ago

I would suggest citizens of the U.S. start looking at Mexico for the economic model that has been envisioned for the USA future. Madison may have meant well when he pressed for a Representative Government, but his theory on the wealthy and privileged using humane, fair and logical judgement on behalf of the common dregs has proven to be the worst decision in American History.

Our current situation is not the fault of the common citizenry. The American people did not get to vote on going to war. The American people did not get to vote on economic legislation. The American people did not get to vote on American Foreign Policy. The American people did not get to vote on NAFTA, The American people did not get to vote on Fast Tract Trade Agreements with Asia. The American people did not get to vote on the members of the Supreme Court. The American people have not voted on tax cuts or polices.The American people did not get to vote on voter rights, campaign finance reform or giving corporation unlimited human rights. The American people did not vote for Universal Health Care. The American people have not voted on any significant policy, legislation, treaty, tax or anything that effects their lives, living conditions, health, future, freedoms....

The American people did, however, vote for representives from both parties that have lead us to where we are right now. They've lead us into a manufactured oblivion of their own construction or decontruction. The American people vote on what their given. The candidates they are presented with are the people they vote for. We do have other parties and other candidates but we do not have popular vote. We have a public bound by representative government and now we have a republic that is burning down around the people it is suppose to protect and support. We can go back to the polls agains and elect different representatives to get the exact same results.

Nothing has ever been done at the election booth. The people have to protest and force the hands of politicians. American society has become so fractured and divided, I wonder if we have the strength as a People to come together on a common cause to bring the American government back to serving the general welfare of all citizens instead the economic well being of millionaires, billionaires and future trillionaires.

prashant kharkar's picture
prashant kharkar 11 years 45 weeks ago

Your daily blogs are great! I also like your radio show whenever I get a chance to listen to it. The problem is none of the so called conservatives are either reading your stuff or listening to you.

leighmf's picture
leighmf 11 years 45 weeks ago

If we're going to be peons, why don't we go straight to puttin' our washers on the front porch and making planters out of old tires. As a garden designer and purveyor of garden art online, I speak from the pulse of what's being sold nationally by small to medium manufacturing concerns. Nobody is buying anything and it's getting worse. Garden furniture, artisans and stonewear manufacturers have gone out of business or into bankruptcy or changed hands. Motor freight shipping costs now equal or exceed the cost of merchandise, and many people can't stomach that idea- out of disgust they won't purchase mail order. Especially in outdoor metal furniture, people feel they can only afford the cheap Chinese version of our traditional American manufacturers.

Nevertheless- the expensive items especially for the gardens of millionaires and billionaires aren't being ordered either. I suspect something is going on.

If it weren't for Ralph Lauren changing the pottery in their window designs now and then, I'd have to get food stamps. Thanks, RL.


Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 45 weeks ago

I suspect that at least some right-winger conservatives are reading and listening...especially the ones who want to keep tabs on how much opposition they have. And, in addition, lots of Democratic politicians who might be bought off by big business...Wall Street...might be seeing the ire and disgust which might make them think twice about being a traitor to their constituents...as Obama has been.

I certainly don't watch or listen to Fox Snooze and have boycotted them since before 911...in fact, well before 911..stopped watching and listening even before they started in on Clinton. But very rarely, I do catch snippets when presented on Jon Stewart's Daily Show or occasionally on the CrooksandLiars web site....and even then often just pass them by.

But, one thing is very likely....that everything we write is being noted and categorized and put into some Fascist's hit list for the day they can act against us. Every letter, email, phone call, or message in blogs, or tweets is being monitored in order to pigeon-hole who we are and what we say. Some are psycho-analyzed to detect possible "psychos", or other potential troublemakers...all done by the computer...then fine-tuned with, perhaps, a live psychoanalyst. Of course they didn't catch the Norwegian in time...if he wasn't a Manchruian Candidate that blew his wad too soon...or some other snaffu breached the intended operation....maybe. The NSA dictionary computers, used in the Echelon project to spy on us, would flag certain words used...which, if a hit, will be on an analysts desk for study. This was the original Echelon program that I'm sure has evolved into sampling the gist of all communications and are filed away based on what is said, or written, and how it is said, or written.

Originally, they weren't suppose to spy on US citizens but they got around this by using the Echelon groups in the UK, Australian, New Zealand, Canada originally part of the UKUSA spy system to do it then report back to the US..but today..with the Patriot Act...they probably do it directly. They have facial expression recognition computer systems to not only look you up to see who you are and everything about you but they can read your facial expressions, ostensibly, to determine what you are about to do and what you are up to.

I suppose it sounds paranoid...but if Hitler was able to use technology, IBM punched cards, and tabulating machines to keep tabs on the Jews and all the others that were his victims then modern day computers are basically telling our potential enemies (the ones in control of all of that electronic surveillance equipment) what we think.

The thought police may be knocking at our doors one day soon, I'm afraid. But, what is the alternative? Keep quiet? No friggin' way! If we keep quiet and don't make a lot of noise, they WILL be putting us on the box cars to the "labor camps" sooner than you can say Auschwitz.

But, the modern day Fascist's "final solution" will be a lot more subtle. They will squeeze us till we starve to death or die of some treatable disease because we couldn't afford to see a doctor. What the US, through the use of The World Bank and the IMF, in making deals with corrupt dictators and then enforcing austerity on the people, has done to the third world...they are now trying to do right here in America.

They may also use the things we say as an indicator as to who would make the next great patsy to take the fall for some false flag operation they feel they need in order to frighten more people into their webs of deceit. I believe that the old infamous CIA programs of the past, like MKULTRA, have only been improved on and that they already have patsy's....Manchurian Candidates...already groomed for when they are called into action to create yet another "terrorist" operation.

I know that there are high and mighty sounding organizations that pretend to be liberal but which are in fact being run by, or in collusion with, ultra-right wing organizations. Their whole mission is to fool liberals into supporting them which ends up supporting the causes of these right-wing organizations. I suggest that liberals do their own investigations into these groups.

It's so easy to scare people out of their freedoms...their jobs...and their lives. They are trying to scare us right now with the debt ceiling...trying to scare us out of our social programs.

It also adds to everyone's stress....and stress is a big killer...they are trying to kill us with stress or starvation....and as long as we don't strike back at them they will succeed without so much as a whimper. But maybe we will strike back at them in a previously unanticipated manner when serious highly contagious diseases are a result of the lack of ability to pay for medical care. Even some of our rich tormentors will succumb to their own annihilation because of their own greed and stupidity.

Medicine is running out of it's ability to cure or save some people because their vaccines are no longer able to combat the super-bugs that will possibly wipe out humanity. If these aren't detected and dealt with in a timely manner they could become the doomsday virus that will even get the rich in their lairs or bunkers with solid gold toilet seats.



michaelb44's picture
michaelb44 11 years 45 weeks ago

We have the choice of two types of government.

One, where one party controls one or both houses of Congress, the executive branch and the other party controls some other combination of these. This has worked well in the past (Bob Dole), but it is obvious that this is no longer an option.

Two, one party controls everything. If this is the Democrates, you will need a super majority to get anything done.This is very unlikely to happen with all the outside money that now controls elections. If Republicans are in power they can control the government with a bare majority, with the help of a few spineless Democrates, they will be able to do whatever they want. Non of these options are good news for Americans. Someone please tell me I'm wrong.

dianhow 11 years 45 weeks ago

Obama has compromised too much. McConnell / Baggers ? Not at all. Baggers want a default so Obama loses. This is war Baggers v US Economy GOP vowed to cause Obama's Waterloo. They do not care they are harming our economy, jobs. They will do whatever it takes to get their way . Even bring on another meltdown. Baggers are devious Corp Ass kissing good for nothings. Voters you must correct your grave mistake . Vote them out Recall Protest Fight Vote Demand e-mail

www.congress.gov               www.senate.gov     Do your part or do not complain

dianhow 11 years 45 weeks ago

Rich To bad no one gave a damn and fact checked Reaganomics deregulation-amnesty- Bush Cheney admin debt- or his lies, fear tactics on Iraq. Killing maiming wasting trillions Reagan Bush GOP policies, con judges that greatly favored wealth last 30 yrs - drove our wages in the toilet. No one checked on why Bush gave 2 huge unfunded corp cuts , loopholes and made sweet deals with big OIL & Pharma . Or that Bush gave cuts to Co that sent good jobs overseas. Why Bush GOP congress never said NO ! Not once in 6 long yrs. 2000 -2006 When Dems won congress Jan 2009 Bush vowed to veto or filibuster any Dem bill .The Baggers are on same toxic path and worse

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 45 weeks ago

"Any agreement by Congress to cut the income security programs while leaving the main beneficiaries from our government—the rich—untouched, would be unconscionable. If Congress does not reach an agreement, and the deficit remains unfunded, this will give the president an unprecedented opportunity to expose who the government really serves, because it will be up to him alone, no agreement from Congress would be necessary to decide where to cut. Let him first withhold money from the enforcement and the support of laws that enrich the rich. This would lead to higher wages for workers and lower prices for consumers, and it would therefore be a good quid pro quo for the cuts he wants to make in income security programs."

"If the parties do not reach an agreement and the deficit is unfunded, the president should use his power to cut funds to right-to-work states and redirect them to states that let unions be. This will call attention to the problem and stimulate job creation in states where work actually pays. And with higher wages, workers will be better able to save for retirement in anticipation of Social Security cuts."

"If an agreement is not reached and the deficit is unfunded, the president should stop funding the enforcement for patents that are older than five years. This would preserve the incentive to innovate—if innovation even requires it—while lowering prices substantially on millions of products in the marketplace. With lower prices, workers will be in a better position to absorb cuts in the income security programs if these are made."


bonnie 11 years 45 weeks ago

Welcome to the Machine.

Anyway, I think Americans are beginning to wake up to the spendthrift conditioning of the 80's. I think Americans are beginning to go back to the frugal mindset of our parents and grandparents.

Now, I can't say what is or was the catalyst for this change in consumerism thinking. It's one of those chicken or egg quandaries.

But, what I do know is the capitalistic hyper-consumerism model America has become dependent on to fuel our grown and insure job security is so glutenously bloated and grossly outdated - America will run its self into the brick wall of bankruptcy if it is not revamped/remodeled to reflect the CURRENT spending "power" of the average American.

Elioflight's picture
Elioflight 11 years 45 weeks ago

It's called neofuedalism. I think all the thinkers here can get the obvious picture without my description. Revolution is the only solution to wrest power from the wealthy--history shows this time and again.

The equation is simple: underpaid/unemployed workers equal penniless consumers equals dwindling profits for business (eventually, since they are holding on to their record profits, but cannot realize that when they hold most of the money, there is little for us to cycle back to them.) Are they really that stupid?

I might add that a world population that will reach 7 billion this year is more than the earth can sustain, more than jobs that can be created, more than can be fed and housed. etc.; this the rather large elephant in the room.

stonesphear's picture
stonesphear 11 years 45 weeks ago

They can't fix it, It's to broke to fix. Multinatioal Corportate conglomerates rule the roost , the hen that laid Humpty Dumpty got Bar B Qed by W and poor Humpty got scrambled in a pan full of pork fat.

adelbaum 11 years 45 weeks ago

Every night, countless Chinese mothers are telling their children to finish their rice, because millions of American children go to bed hungry.

DELETEBusGreg 11 years 45 weeks ago

The Honorable John Boehner
Speaker of the House of Representatives


I have watched with incredulity the circus in the House of Representatives. Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Greg Williams, I will turn 59 years on August Xth and I am disabled. I have to get by on $ 923.00 each month and losing this would create incredible hard ship. Let me explain to you right here, that I and many of my compatriots will lay the full blame of default on you and the Republican Party.

I have written letters to my Representative Bob Filner, my two Democratic Senators Feinstein and Boxer as well as my President explaining this to them. I have also urged them to stand fast and NOT give in to your demands unless they include raising taxes on those earning one million dollars or more. I am not alone, as 19 studies recently confirmed that 81 percent of Americans demand this.

Again, Sir, it is you and the members of the Republican Party who are to blame for both the stale mate as well as the mess we are in in the first place. Republicans were handed both a balanced budget as well as a budget surplus by Democratic President William Jefferson Clinton. It was YOUR party the Republicans and YOUR President, George Walker Bush who squandered that wealth with unpaid tax cuts for the wealthy. It was YOUR side that entered a war on false pretenses and made up ‘facts’ in Iraq!

Your failure to lead is evident, Mr. Speaker. If you were a true leader, you would have put Country before your own interests. Your failure to put the petulant newbies from the TEA Party in their place and work on compromise demanded by the vast majority of the country, you Sir, pandered to the lunatic fringe in order to preserve your precious job as Speaker. You deserve the blame for the failure to lead as well as the imminent default.

Allow me to close with what I told My Democratic leaders. I asked them not to cave in to the demands of the Republicans. Defaulting will be far less harmful to the Nation than giving the Republicans Carte Blanche in giving the rest of the country to their corporate bosses.

You Sir, your party and its TEA Party fringe are the ones who are to blame for the mess we are in. From tax breaks for the rich to no meaningful regulation of banks, health insurance industry and the energy industry; it has been your side that has sold the Nation down the toilet for decades.
If you sir had any clue as to leadership or how to put country first, we would not be in this fix. Real leadership would have been for you to put your pride and vanity on the back burner, done what the vast majority of the Nation demands by raising taxes on the rich and worked on a real compromise with Democrats and crafted A Bill that is agreeable to the people, not your corporate bosses.

Your pathetic vanity, failure to even have a clue about leadership and utter failure to do the word Representative proud are what is to blame for the stalemate in Congress. You once proclaimed after regaining the House that the ‘adults’ are now in charge. If that is so, Sir, why do you and Mr. Cantor behave like petulant little twelve year old girls???

Greg Williams

cross-posted at www.busgreg.blogspot.com and here

Renaldo7's picture
Renaldo7 11 years 45 weeks ago

Would not the very first cut be to cut politician pay? Perhaps their pain might stimulate resolution.
Last minute issue has already hurt, so cut 2 month's pay of all politicians. No resolution by 8-2, cut an additional 6 months pay. If not resolved by 8-3, cut an entire year of politician pay.
Secondly, reduce all political pay to minimum wage since these are servants of the people and must identify with those people.
Thirdly, bust up the political party concept and replace it with all non-partisan politicians.
Fourthly, create term limits with politicians limited to one term and no pension following that one term.
Fifthly, make all political issues advisory only with their final determination made by popular vote.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 45 weeks ago

Great letter to Boehner, Greg! I would have added many expletives to that old cry baby. Anyway good on you, Greg.

The thing is that if they don't pay up to their own citizens on social payments, especially social security and medicare/medicaid then they are defaulting on the debt anyway. They may not be defaulting on China, Saudi Arabia, the rich, or others but they sure are defaulting on the American people.

Good idea, Renaldo, we should be demanding that Congress and the President take a huge pay cut for not doing their jobs of keeping the country from defaulting on it's debt...especially the debt that every Republican is claiming is part of the National Debt....the social programs. Since they see it as "debt" then they would be defaulting on that part of the "debt" that is absolutely necessary to keep many masses of people from starvation. They would rather be killing people in the Middle East, and now Africa and killing their own people than cut out that huge piece of the pie that funds the killing machine. There's only one way to climb out of debt...same as after WWII....make those who mostly benefited from the riches gleaned from killing people and screwing their own people...by making them pay the same level of taxes as they did after WWII..during the Eisenhower years...well over 50%.

So what would happen if we defaulted on the debt? It has been claimed that interest rates would go up. And if interest rates go up then the banks, and other megafinancial institutions, would not be able to borrow at the current 1/4% (.25%) interest rates and then funnel that money to the BRIC countries to get 5-3/4%(5.75%) interest...a 5-1/2% (5.50%) profit. So if interest rates go up then these rich institutions will lose. Many Republican businessmen will be losing as well because people have to have money to spend it...and they will lose most of their business. So why would they let the default happen? They would be hurting themselves. They are just using the debt ceiling and threat of default to scare us into letting go of the social programs. Just what the Republicans have been wanting all along. We should call their bluff on this and demand that they don't touch social programs.

jstrahan's picture
jstrahan 11 years 45 weeks ago

There is a very good explanation. Just read the article in The Nation Magazine's latest edition which is titled "ALEC Exposed". The Nation was able to get about 800 pages outlining this organization's game plan to allow corporate America to take over our government and dole out functions to member organizations by privitizing such functions such as education, protection of the environment and health care, among others. Think tanks have been set up in every state which actually have written the bills in both state legislatures and Congress been proposed by their representatives. By taking over state governments in at least 30 states, they are aggressively working their will at the direction of people like the Koch Brothers. They all have taken steps to rig elections by making it harder to vote taking such steps as requiring voter i.d. ALEC was founded in 1973. Their long term goals are: down sizing government, removing regulations on corporations and making it harder to hold the economically and politically powerful to account. The Republicans are faithfully following their marching orders from ALEC and systematically following the blue print. It's obvious most of our fellow citizens don't have a clue they are cutting their own throats every time they vote for the Republicans. They are easily lead to believe voting for Republicans is the way to keep Democrats from taking away from them and giving it to the people of color. They also don't understand that what Republicans mean by smaller government is to allow big business to do whatever they please without consequences so long as they fund Republicans running for office. The news coverage of the current debt ceiling debate is indicative of how worthless the national news media, especially the t.v. pundits, in providing a truthful picture of what is fact and what is B.S. Democrats appear to be unable to stand up and fight for the average citizen. In Texas we have a simple rule in dealing with antagonists. If someone wee wees on your leg, you do everything in your power to alter the anatomy of the guilty party. This is what we need to see from the Democrats. When most people wake up and realize what the REpublicans will do to us, it will be too late. If we don't vote in the Democrats, and I mean real Democrats in the House, Senate, and Presidency, what is going to stop the Republicans and ALEC from completing their mission. By the way, ACLE means the American Legislative EXchange Council. Read this article and understand the degree to which the Republicans have totally sold out to Corporate America.

westerner1's picture
westerner1 11 years 45 weeks ago

Trickle Down Economics has turned into Trickle On Economics. The GOP sold us on tax cuts for the rich by claiming that the rich would hire more Americans. Labor statistics from the beginning of the Tax Cuts until now indicate that jobs have left America and gone to China. Obviously the wealthy took their tax savings and used them to shut down factories here and move them to China. The middle class better check that wet feeling on the back of their shirts. It's not rain.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 45 weeks ago

Leading US Progressive organizations:
Progressive Political Parties:
(note: Democratic Party is not listed...and I pretty much concur):

Let's really make a change we can believe in this time...let's break the chains of tyranny of the Republican and Democratic Parties...vote Green. It's either that or it's the streets!


Landbeyond's picture
Landbeyond 11 years 45 weeks ago

Thom, why are you talking about economic growth, and avoiding the issue of PEAK OIL? Are we not on a world oil production plateau? Will economic growth not result in rising oil and other energy prices, followed by another economic collapse? Do you dismiss the ideas of Richard Heinberg in his new book "End of Growth"? Are you sure the US economy hasn't entered a period of long-term contraction?

Are you not the author of "The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight"? Can we expect a little more intellectual honesty from you?

gerald's picture
gerald 11 years 45 weeks ago

Don't fall for the GOP lie: There is no budget crisis. There's a job and growth crisis.
friend who's been watching the absurd machinations in Congress asked me "what happens if we don't solve the budget crisis and we run out of money to pay the nation's bills?" It was only then I realized how effective Republicans lies have been. That we're calling it a "budget crisis" and worrying that if we don't "solve" it we can't pay our nation's bills is testament to how successful Republicans have been distorting the truth. The federal budget deficit has no economic relationship to the debt limit. Republicans have linked the two, and the Administration has played along, but they are entirely separate. Republicans are using what would otherwise be a routine, legally technical vote to raise the debt limit as a means of holding the nation hostage to their own political goal of shrinking the size of the federal government. In economic terms, we will not "run out of money" next week. We're still the richest nation in the world, and the Federal Reserve has unlimited capacity to print money.Nor is there any economic imperative to reach an agreement on how to fix the budget deficit by Tuesday. It's not even clear the federal budget needs that much fixing anyway.Yes, the ratio of the national debt to the total economy is high relative to what it's been. But it's not nearly as high as it was after World War II - when it reached 120 percent of the economy's total output. If and when the economy begins to grow faster - if more Americans get jobs, and we move toward a full recovery - the debt/GDP ratio will fall, as it did in the 1950s, and as it does in every solid recovery. Revenues will pour into the Treasury, and much of the current "budget crisis" will be evaporate. Get it? We're really in a "jobs and growth" crisis - not a budget crisis. And the best way to get jobs and growth back is for the federal government to spend more right now, not less - for example, by exempting the first $20,000 of income from payroll taxes this year and next, recreating a WPA and Civilian Conservation Corps, creating an infrastructure bank, providing tax incentives for small businesses to hire, expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit, and so on. But what happens next week if Congress can't or won't deliver the President a bill to raise the debt ceiling? Remember: This is all politics, mixed in with legal technicalities. Economics has nothing to do with it. One possibility, therefore, is for the Treasury to keep paying the nation's bills regardless. It would continue to issue Treasury bills, which are our nation's IOUs. When those IOUs are cashed at the Federal Reserve Board, the Fed would do what it has always done: Honor them. How long could this go on without the debt ceiling being lifted? That's a legal question. Republicans in Congress could mount a legal challenge, but no court in its right mind would stop the Fed from honoring the full faith and credit of the United States. The wild card is what the three big credit-rating agencies will do. As long as the Fed keeps honoring the nation's IOUs, America's credit should be deemed sound. We're not Greece or Portugal, after all. We'll still be the richest nation in the world, whose currency is the basis for most business transactions in the world. Standard & Poor's has warned it will downgrade the nation's debt from a triple-A to a double-A rating if we don't tend to the long-term deficit. But, as I've noted, S&P has no business meddling in American politics - especially since its own non-feasance was partly responsible for the current size of the federal debt (had it done its job the debt and housing bubbles wouldn't have precipitated the terrible recession, and the federal outlays it required). As long as we pay our debts on time, our global creditors should be satisfied. And if they're satisfied, S&P, Moody's, and Fitch should be, too. Repeat after me: The federal deficit is not the nation's biggest problem. The anemic recovery, huge unemployment, falling wages, and declining home prices are bigger problems. We don't have a budget crisis. We have a jobs and growth crisis. The GOP has manufactured a budget crisis out of the Republicans' extortionate demands over raising the debt limit. They have succeeded in hoodwinking the public, including my friend.

web: www.tikkun.org
email: info@spiritualprogressives.org

gerald's picture
gerald 11 years 45 weeks ago


Christian terrorism is spreading beyond America to all corners of our planet.

gerald's picture
gerald 11 years 45 weeks ago

I wonder how many human lives have been killed in our spreading of Christianity since recorded history??? Human efforts to link Jesus Christ (Christianity) to the killing of non-Christians is blasphemy, the unpardonable sin. Jesus Christ did not wish for human beings to be killed in His name. Do you sense that more Americans are reaching the insanity level?

gerald's picture
gerald 11 years 45 weeks ago

Repeat after me: The federal deficit is not the nation's biggest problem. The anemic recovery, huge unemployment, falling wages, and declining home prices are bigger problems. We don't have a budget crisis. We have a jobs and growth crisis. The GOP has manufactured a budget crisis out of the Republicans' extortionate demands over raising the debt limit. They have succeeded in hoodwinking the public, including my friend.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 45 weeks ago

Gerald: Thanks for that "quote" you posted from Robert Reich...#34. You did post the souce...sort of...which gives the home page of Tikkun.org but you gave no indication that this was a quote from Robert Reich. I initially thought that these were your words. If anyone goes to the following website to read Robert Reich's message:

Robert Reich's message comes right after the introductory comment by Rabbi Michael Lerner.

Anyway, that is a great web site. And this is a very revealing message from Robert Reich. Incidentally, I just watched Robert Reich's 1 hour speech on FSTV.

On a CNBC talking head show I hear these right-wing lying heads try to refute the "popular message going around that the debt crisis is only a trick by Republicans to destroy social security". These Fascist slanted major media talking head shows are, of course, a feeble efforts at telling their own lies.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 45 weeks ago

Here's a "funny" parody of how Congress intends to "Serve the People"

To Serve the People: Congress Agrees on New Debt Plan
by: Jason van Boom on July 30th, 2011 | 3 Comments »
BREAKING: Congress has agreed on a new debt ceiling plan! Huge savings will come through a Social Security and Medicare reform program that’s also eco-friendly. It’s called “Soylent Green.” Obama: “We’ve always known that the solution to these problems lies in the American people themselves.”


It might be a good idea if we all watched the 1973 movie Soylent Green...with Charlton Heston, Joseph Cotton, and Edward G. Robinson once again because it is science fiction coming true...and maybe even before the year 2022 which is what year the movie was set in.

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 11 years 45 weeks ago

Palindromedary, LOL, we can only hope the facist's think we're dangerous. As for "psychos", can you imagine how Becker-head, Limpbaugh, Bachman, and "ole crosshairs Palin" would profile?....... Don't get faint of heart now, the fight has just begun!

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 11 years 45 weeks ago

Good job, BusGreg!.... Fight on brother!

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 11 years 45 weeks ago

Gerald, You're right, it's a working/middle class depression and job creation should have been the political priority all along. This however does'nt fit in with the republican's number one priority, that of creating even more misery for the working class, knowing fox will blame it on Obama and open the way for one of the corp. shill, rightwing theocrats to become President.

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 11 years 45 weeks ago

How do I think the economy looks? GE is a good reflection of whats happening. Job creator.."over there," "killer here", Jeff Emmelt, and others like him are peeing their pants with excitement as they tap the slave markets. Our trade laws and Emmelt's short sighted greed, is heading the country quickly toward total financial ruin. It's all about shareholders and WEALTH WITHOUT WORK, a formula for disaster for most of us that work our butts off and pay our fair share of taxes in addition to actually spending the money we earn.

I wonder what % of the elite class understands that even they will eventually succumb to this economic black death. A country without industry is like the Titanic without life boats...it's just a matter of time for everyone.

Thom, the English Longbows, a new weapon used at the battle of Crecy, and later at Agincourt, also played an important role in defeating the mounted french knights in their heavy armor. It's great hearing history snippets like that!

gerald's picture
gerald 11 years 44 weeks ago

@Palindromedary, Thank you for giving Robert Reich the credit for the article! For some reason I slipped on that article.@2950-10K, I try to put meself in the shoes of the poor and the working class Americans. It is obvious to me that these people are suffering. My concern is that there is deep and widespread hatred in this country. Why is the "Golden Rule" dead in our country???

gerald's picture
gerald 11 years 44 weeks ago

I feel totally helpless in trying to help the poor and the working class Americans!!! We have massive problems in our country and greed is winning in providing tens of millions of Americans with misery, pain, and suffering. I believe we are seeing crimes, sins, and treason on a daily basis.

gerald's picture
gerald 11 years 44 weeks ago

@Palindromedary, we are witnessing Soylent Green coming to life in our country. I wonder what American transnational corporation will grind up American bodies for processing and this ground meat will be placed in cans for sale??? Will American transnational corporations label these cans SPAM TWO???

Thom Hartmann should have an interesting radio show on August 1, 2011. I wonder if he has enough time to process the debt deal and share his thoughts with us. I will be trying to determine if Obama has caved into the demands for any deal and of course, my prediction will have come to life.

gerald's picture
gerald 11 years 44 weeks ago

Solomon wanted to understand his heart. Leo Buscaglia believed that seeing with our heart is important. I believe that thinking with our heart is also important.

Landbeyond's picture
Landbeyond 11 years 44 weeks ago

No, it's an energy crisis, underlying all the others. Thom used to know that, but he seems to have forgotten.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 44 weeks ago

I was just watching a podcast of the July 27th and 28th The Young Turks show. On the 27th show they talk about this 15 year old boy who was working as a hit man for the Mexican Drug Gangs. He had kidnapped and slit the throats of 4 of the men he kidnapped. He admitted that he had been a hit man since the age of 11. He will be out of prison in 2013 to be returned to his mother in San Diego.

On the show on the 28th, they talked about a Senior high school student played a prank by putting a blow up doll in a restroom stall in the school. He has been given an 8 year sentence in prison.

Is this a great country or what?

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 44 weeks ago

William Bennett, moral crusader, and big time loser lost $8 million dollars gambling in casinos?

Michele Bachmann's husband Marcus is gay?
She sure did avoid the gay topic like a plague when asked recently. And those Bachmann clinics try to straighten out gays? What about the Bachmann's business taking advantage of "socialist government" programs while railing out against them? What hypocrites?!!!

These topics were also discussed on The Young Turks show....man Cenk really gets worked up...no wonder MSNBC wanted to put Jessie Jackson in his place. They needed someone who is more accepting of the pablum and blah conformist positions that main stream networks want to put out.

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 11 years 44 weeks ago


gerald's picture
gerald 11 years 44 weeks ago

And America's long-suffering taxpayers, who pay the salaries of the politicians who brought us to the brink of default? How do they come out?

That remains to be seen. The big concern among many was that this crisis would result in significant tax increases. All the big discussions -- the Simpson-Bowles Commission, the Gang of Six in the Senate, the potential Grand Bargain between President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner -- included revenue enhancements, the elimination of loopholes, the termination of tax credits. In other words, tax increases on some people. And at time when income tax rates and overall tax receipts as a percentage of GDP are as low as they've been in recent history, the prospect of making a huge dent in the deficit through spending cuts alone seemed politically unviable. And yet, thanks to a combination of Republican intransigence, moderate wishy-washiness, and Democratic lameness, the deal included no revenue enhancements. People worried about higher taxes have dodged a bullet, for now.

So taxes will never go up? Remember, I just said "for now." As always, the devil is in the details. As the White House noted in its fact sheet, tax cuts are always just over the horizon. President Obama couldn't get Republican agreement to raise taxes on the wealthy, but he may not have to. Current law calls for the Bush-era tax cuts on income and investments to expire at the end of 2012. All that has to happen for taxes to rise is for President Obama and Congress *not* to agree on how and whether to extend them. And as this whole artificial crisis has shown, Washington as it is currently configured has a great capacity for not agreeing.

The taxes will NEVER go up for the wealthy!!!!! OBAMA WILL NOT BE RE-ELECTED IN 2012!!!!! All of Washington will be under the control of the Triad (Republicans, Libertarians, and the Teabaggers) of Evil Party!!!!!

Landbeyond's picture
Landbeyond 11 years 44 weeks ago

It's a possible "8 year sentence in prison". Big difference. Plus the other case is in Mexico, so there's no real comparison possible.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 44 weeks ago

At least most people would have to agree that 8 years prison sentence even it it was 1 year...or even 1 month...or even 1 day....is totally ridiculous punishment for such a silly prank. The fact that the officials at the school and the local police got so stupid and paranoid for maybe thinking it was a terrorist plot is pretty lame. We should put those idiots ind prison for disturbing the peace or just being stupid. No school official thought to check to see that it was only a blow up doll?

And the other case with the 15 year old hit boy that slit the throats of 4 other people (likely not his first victims since he admitted to being a hit "man" for the Mexican drug cartel since he was 11) would be sent to San Diego to live with his mother after his 3 year sentence was up....American authorities are going to allow this??? Maybe he'll get hired by the CIA or FBI to be their hit man? This country is becoming not too different from Mexico corruption anyway.

denver2011 11 years 44 weeks ago

I wish the U.S. education system taught more history. We are following the path of an old european monarchy which ended horribly for the elite who stepped all over the "people." Should we as "citizens" place a guillotine at the entrance of the Capital to remind those who have the power to make decisions, that continuously making decisions keeping a people down, might eventually end up in a "Reign of Terror" and create a messy situation.

By no means is this a call to bring Robespierre back from the dead. But in a more defined capacity, our leaders should start leading and stop being selfish by bringing a happy medium to our nation. A nation where many lives have been lost to bring it where it is, only to be lost to the greedy and powerful.

After all, the King of France and the other aristocrates thought they were powerful, until their turn on the plank of Mme. Guillotine.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 44 weeks ago

The rich aristocrats in France didn't want to pay their fair share of taxes either and the king had no other choice but to tax the ones who could least afford it. Was he a weak king or just a scoundrel who didn't care. That's what I am wondering about our President.

Maybe we should march on Washington with placards of pictures of guillotines to get the message across. A lot of aristocrats as well as the king lost their heads because they deserved it. The aristocrats and others in the kings gallery lost their heads first and, I understand, several months later they finally did the king as well.

Thom's Blog Is On the Move

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