Constitution doesn’t say, “We the millionaires…”

It’s good to be a millionaire in America. A new report from the Center for American progress shows that millionaires are paying – as a share of their income – 25% less in taxes than they were in the mid 1990’s – 25% less! But that’s not all – according to data from the IRS – in 2009 – 1,400 millionaires paid absolutely no taxes at all. So just like some of the biggest transnational corporations in the world like GE and Exxon Mobile – 1,400 millionaires were off the hook and didn’t have to pitch in one penny to Uncle Sam.

In fact – the average federal income tax rate for millionaires in America is around 22% - far less than what your typical schoolteacher in Wisconsin is paying. And despite the fact that a majority of Americans support tax hikes on millionaires – our millionaires – as well as billionaires – and transnational corporations – once again escaped without having to make one sacrifice in the name of deficit reduction like the rest of us.

Last time I checked – the Constitution doesn’t say, “We the millionaires…”


Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 11 years 43 weeks ago

The military doesn't use "Private Contractors." They are using "Pirate Contractors."

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 43 weeks ago

And look at that stock market "dip". And those talking head idiots on CNBC sound like they are trying to blame everyone else but the greedsters in the US. It was the advice from US neoliberal firms like Goldman Sacks and many in the Bush and Obama administrations that Greece and Russia and many other European countries relied on to model their economic decisions on that helped lead them to their economic problems. Greece wanted to join the EU but couldn't unless their economy was proven to be "good enough" and the neoliberals showed them how to "work the books" to make them look better than they were...just the way they did it back home in the US.

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 11 years 43 weeks ago

The use of Geothermal energy makes me nervous. Where there are sites suitable for this energy, there are uncontrollable volcanic possibilities. The Yellowstone Caldera has a violent history.

If we can grab that energy without putting people at risk (i.e. get the energy without having people living too closely) the potential balances well.

Iceland has been fortunate in its use of Geothermal Energy, so far.

DRichards's picture
DRichards 11 years 43 weeks ago

This week, Sirota appeared on the Canadian Broadcast Company'sConnect with Mark Kelley to discuss the larger implications of President Obama's debt celing deal with Republicans. In the Q&A, Sirota argues that President Obama didn't get forced into the deal - rather, he engineered the deal to deliberately put Social Security and Medicare cuts on the table. Click here to watch the clip (it starts about 4 minutes in).

Lore's picture
Lore 11 years 43 weeks ago

Michigan does not have a progressive tax rate, so an increase in taxes in Michigan hit those who make the least hardest. I guess that shows support for the millionaires too! The SBT (Small Business Tax) was recinded and a tax increase passed on to residents to cover that loss. In addition, Snyder decided that a Pension is an asset and needs to be taxed! So retired people will see an increase in taxes!

This all makes it seem like Republicans have decided not to represent those who make too little or have retired. Punishing those that don't fit the Republican idea of 'deserving Americans'!

Lore's picture
Lore 11 years 43 weeks ago

@ Gene --- you nailed it! Besides the fleecing - has Pres Obama changed the way the contracts are given or are these ongoing? The Bush Administration bypassed normal procedures and put the contracts through the Secretary of State so that these CONTRACTORS do not report to the MILITARY! Have they fixed this? Did I miss it? Can we get legislation to prevent this in the future?

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 43 weeks ago

Gambling used to be considered very "dirty", a sin, and even illegal in many states. It wrecked homes and bankrupted a lot of people. Only a couple of places in the US were held as gambling reservations that were tolerated..mostly in Nevada...Reno...Las Vegas. These "sin cities" were created and run largely by gangsters. As it spread...Atlantic City...and Indian reservations around the US...silly people could go around and lose their shirts.

The stock market has always been a sanctified way of gambling...oh, excuse me..."investing"! And they were bestowed with the pseudo religious moniker of "capitalists". All bow down to Mammon the god of money and wealth! And the "evil" communists, looking through their TJ Ekleberg glasses, dared to besmirch, criticize, and complain of the hypocritical money maggots who exploited the working classes.

When there were government controls it might have been more like investing...but without government controls...more like gambling...reckless gambling. And the worst part is gambling with other people's money and losing it all.

Wall Street is a one-armed bandit run by crime-world figures that we used to find filthy and disgusting. When they invented and started using "creative tools" like derivatives...that not many people really understands...and use super computers to get the advantage...most smaller players, who are trying to use the traditional way of analyzing the markets..if even that, are easily victimized.

When the government, "bought off" by these financial behemoths, make the rules that favor them and creates money out of thin air to dump into the market in order to make the average investor, or just those who watch the market, think that all is well with the "economy", then it is all smoke and mirrors, voodoo, or junk economics. In fact it is not really economics at all just a one-sided casino that is raking in all the wealth of the nation from a gullible and withering population of losers who chose to play the game and lost.

I heard one talking head on CNBC make an incredibly stupid remark...something to the effect that we need to ease up on banking regulation even more....yeah, right, let them throw all our savings into the grand slot machine. These capitalist gambling addicts need to put into straight-jackets.

tim-mccoy's picture
tim-mccoy 11 years 43 weeks ago

As an American, you are also entitled to the pursuit of happiness.
This makes us a great country.
Consider why we give horses and beasts of burden off on Sunday.
Ayn Rand does not think we have a right to command you to give your beast one day off a week.

These are the two kinds of people in the world.

DRichards's picture
DRichards 11 years 43 weeks ago

Re: Consider why we give horses and beasts of burden off on Sunday.

Because Old Testament Jewish Law prohibits working on the Sabath?

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 43 weeks ago

Amy Goodwin:.....Now, let’s be clear on what this commission is and what’s going to happen to Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security. Michael Hudson?

MICHAEL HUDSON: The commission is going to be composed of three people, suggested by the House leader, Republican and Democratic leaders each, and the Senate Republican and Democratic leaders. The Republican—six Republican appointees to the commission are already pledged no taxes, and especially no closing of loopholes, nothing that will increase the money paid by their campaign contributors to the Republican Party. We don’t know who the Democratic appointees are going to be. But in the last commission that Mr. Obama appointed, the deficit reduction commission, they were all Democrats who were in favor of cutting Social Security. They were Wall Street Democrats, or what used to be called the Democratic Leadership Council. So the worry is that the Democrats are going to push their own tax cutters and that really there’s not going to be very much difference between the Democrats and the Republicans in what they propose for Social Security and Medicare. Mr. Obama had threatened that there wouldn’t be enough money to send out Social Security checks, and that simply isn’t true. The Social Security Administration has its own holdings of Treasury bills, just like an individual would hold their own savings. Of course they could have cashed in the Treasury bills.

AMY GOODMAN: What about the credit agencies, the rating agencies?

MICHAEL HUDSON: They have played a very bad role in this. Here’s what happened. Under the Frank—the bank reform—

AMY GOODMAN: With Congress Member Frank.

MICHAEL HUDSON: —the credit rating agencies were changed. The government was very angry at them for giving AAA ratings on junk, and their defense in courts saying, "Well, yes, we gave AAA ratings on junk mortgages, but they’re legally only opinions." So the Dodd-Frank bill said, "You rating agencies are liable for your opinions." Well, that—the rating agencies said, "We want to make money on selling our opinions, and we don’t want to have to take any responsibility for them, so we’re going to get you. We’re going to threaten to downgrade the U.S. government, until you say, 'OK, we don't want to hear your risk assessments anymore, because you’re hurting us.’"

But the proper response is to say, look, the rating agencies are just out to make money selling their opinions that are up for sale. The rating agencies are trying to get brownie points with Wall Street for opposing Social Security, for essentially yelling fire when there isn’t any fire. And at the same time, they want to weaken the Dodd-Frank bill so that they don’t have to ever be liable for making a warning about a country and they can continue to go back to giving AAA ratings for junk, which is how they make their money.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 43 weeks ago

AMY GOODMAN: Bill Hartung, your response to that, and also, the whole issue of how—the kind of lobbying power the Pentagon itself has, not just the military contractors, and when there are cuts, where those cuts go, who is hurt most?

WILLIAM HARTUNG: Well, first of all, I think on the issue of war spending driving the debt, that’s absolutely true. If you look at Korea, you look at Vietnam, you look at the Bush administration, along with the tax cuts, that’s been the huge driver of the deficit. So it’s ironic now we’re dealing with that deficit without touching the Pentagon, essentially.

In terms of the distribution of cuts, if you’re giving more money to Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman, it’s going to come from feeding programs, from housing programs, from administration of justice, from environmental protection. The whole rest of the budget, other than Social Security and a few entitlement programs, is discretionary. The Pentagon gets 56 cents on the dollar out of that already. And if they suffer almost no cuts, they’ll be a bigger part of the discretionary budget when this is all over.

Hudson:....ever since the Vietnam War, the military spending has been deindustrializing the American economy. If you have a Pentagon contract—a Pentagon contract is cost-plus. The higher they spend on airplanes, on armaments, the more money they get. So you have them engineering not to cut costs, but to maximize costs, because that’s how they make their profit. So you have a warping of American engineering, American technology, towards the military, and that’s why the industrial core has been shifting to Asia, because they don’t have this military. The economy is being sacrificed to the military.

pahrumplife's picture
pahrumplife 11 years 43 weeks ago

Enigmaramously Ugly

Getting back to more basics, the Oil Pipeline plan and the related wars - extolled and indulged by both Republicans and Democrats, presently and significantly by Mr. Obama continuing where Mr. Bush left off - corporate-manufactured for Afghanistan, or take your pick for the next imperial frontier - is driving the whole US economy and its latest downturn. Other then ALEC, massive unemployment feeds “slave-shop-wages” for-profit private prisons and of course the armed forces that feature well-fed bodies and other perks for indigents and starvelings that will help to perpetuate the fight waged by the oil and gas and pure water magnates and their minions who will not stop killing tribes, men, women, and children, in order to accomplish pivotal land grabs for the sake of business driven by the greed of those among them who must have the most expensive conversation piece, perhaps a famous Monet painting making an elaborate living room, or an imprisoned (showcased) guitar once owned and played by Stevie Ray Vaughan, or a Bentley once occupied by Jack Benny, to impress their guests, in party chats, who will then top them in the brag department the next time everyone is invited to a party at their house. Some protoplasm is horribly wasted.

An aside to those of you who may take Thom’s advice to attend Democratic meetings to influence those meetings of your local Democratic party: You had best gather forces organized en masse to attend meetings or you will be, in all probability and in typical fashion of traditional town and county meetings, plagued and thwarted with the many faces of indifference and avoidance and treated as “should be” gagged and ostracized individuals, by the top dogs and mucky mucks of the party and the Chamber of Commerce. These long-standing members linked in personal purpose, guarding their hard-won territory, can make it very difficult for individuals as well as groups especially if you are speaking against the Corporatocracy (remember the US Chamber of Commerce is a lobbyist organization).

Be organized enough so that the above inhabitants and their pets will have a hard time pushing the buttons of your group which is usually a very easy thing to do. With the help of influenced government institutions and influenced media they can distract, disrupt, divide and conquer easily especially if government agencies and offices, police institutions, legislators, courts and the media are on their side which seems to be mostly the case these days and has been the case for instance in Nye County, including the Democratic Party especially during the fight to stop the precarious location of the for-profit private prison in Pahrump. Think unified, organized grass roots with rules of decorum to follow or it may turn into a big free for all slanderous mob-like mockery with pointing wagging trigger fingers. Seek advice from seasoned community organizers and research.

In the early seventies if you happened to be an individual hitchhiking through South Dakota in the rural vicinity of Rapid City and a car stopped and before you attempted to get in, one of the armed several riding in the car asked whether you were for the Traditionals or for Dickey Wilson (the infamous, and purportedly dubiously elected chairman of the Pine Ridge Rez), your fate might have been dire if you answered for either one side or the other.

I’m not saying that an individual can not effect change through knowledge of and reporting of the facts, and through cleverness and a heart of gold. Just remember, those you are trying to influence think the same of themselves and their friends even if they do bend the truth for their cause. Numbers generally speak louder than just the words – especially large numbers.

Be careful of what you say and do out there. If you spread your common sense where people are having fun you may have the best success. Informing bliss just may help to eradicate ignorance. In the meantime, as Thom advocates, becoming a precinct captain in the Democratic Party, if they’ll let you, appears to be the advantageous move.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 43 weeks ago

911 was an inside job!!
And although Thom does not come out and say this he does seem to indicate that he is not totally convinced of the "official conspiracy theory" either.

Here's what he is said to have said On-air comment 6/18/07: Regarding 9/11:
"I'm calling for serious investigation of this and I'm really pleased to see a community forming trying to find out, not just what happened with buildings 1 and 2, but why did this happen? Who was asleep at the switch? How many warnings did Bush get? Why did he ignore them?

There are these weird coincidences, Bush's oil company was funded by Osama bin Laden's brother, another one of his [Osama's] brothers was having breakfast with his [Bush's] father the morning of 9/11, and these things just make you scratch your head... you know, "what is going on?"

Godzillasrage's picture
Godzillasrage 11 years 43 weeks ago

The Constitution also does not prescribe "capitalism" as the sole economic form as well. In fact a brief history of American economics from the Colonial Period to the freak monster capitalism has taken today would be welcomed.

kenneth9631's picture
kenneth9631 11 years 43 weeks ago

Sure, and these 1,400 millionairs just love the "All Volunteer Military". The volunteer service is one of the worst things to come about in this country; the power brokers have no "Skin" in the game.

dsmiley1's picture
dsmiley1 11 years 43 weeks ago

What puzzels me is how the republicans (The party of the very rich) get the support of so many middle class working men and women. Many of these people that I have encounterd are well .educated. Leading me to wonder? Is the entire education system designed to favor people who are easyly trained and used to create good republicans.

dsmiley1's picture
dsmiley1 11 years 43 weeks ago

On another happy note. I am so glad to hear the millionaires got off cheap. I too did not pay any taxes last year or the year before. Because my small construction business has lost money for the last three years and I have survived by cashing in all my retirement accounts and borrowing from my life insurance. I am now as they say in poker ALL IN. I guess that happens to most people at some point before they become homeless.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 43 weeks ago

Interview of Dennis Kucinich by Peter Scheer on on Truthdig...8/04/11

Dennis Kucinich: Well, I think that this idea that somehow the White House was forced into a bad deal is politically naive. When we saw the White House signal early on that it was ready for cuts in Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid by actually setting aside bedrock principles that the Democratic Party has stood on for generations, that signal indicated that they were ready for a deal that would involve massive cutting of social spending, and increasing or locking in increases for war, and helping further the ambitions of the Defense Department, not touching the Bush tax cuts. And that’s exactly what happened.

The Pentagon can continue to load money into wars which we are told are winding down, and at the same time as they do that, money that is not spent on those wars can be backfilled into the Defense Department budget. So they’re going to benefit twice. Not only are they getting $50 billion more than they had been expecting over a decade, but they’re going to be able to plus their base budget by an accounting trick that lets spending for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, or any overseas contingency operations, continue beyond any discretionary caps in the budget.

...the American people are having impressed upon them an IMF-type structural adjustment in the guise of a deficit-cutting initiative. This is being done, quote, “voluntarily,” unquote. If you look at what’s happening all around the world, the IMF is using a punishing structural-adjustment regimen that is creating a backlash in countries like Greece, where people are facing sharp reductions in their standard of living—reductions in social spending for health care and retirement security, among other things. And why is this being done? In order to further the interests of an investor class. And frankly, I think this same … you know, the bottom line with respect to the United States of America—the bottom line is: Protect the investment class to the detriment of the rest of the country.....

Peter Scheer:....what you’re suggesting seems to be that he wants to give away the store, that he …

Dennis Kucinich: Well, I don’t think the president of the United States ever accepted a deal he didn’t want.

Peter Scheer: Right.

Dennis Kucinich: And in this case, I think that the telltale sign was when he put Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid on the table—which, by the way, when the commission, the super Congress commission comes into effect, will become extremely vulnerable. So the idea of President Obama somehow being incapable of negotiating—excuse me. He knows exactly what he’s doing. If he had been in a political trap here, he would have immediately, as a constitutional scholar, resorted to the 14th Amendment. It says in section 4, “The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned.” And it goes on. But the 14th Amendment, section 4, basically empowered the president, if he had been put in a box by the Republicans, to play a trump card. He didn’t do that, and he never intended to do that. He got the deal he wanted. And that’s something that people need to think about, what the implications are of that.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 43 weeks ago

Kucinich: We’re trapped in a system where we somehow believe that all we have to do is change the players and we’re going to get a different outcome. Maybe not. Because within the logic of this system, now supported or buttressed by Citizens United and Buckley v. Valeo, is a system of corporate governance which impresses itself upon the people of the United States for its own benefit, to the people’s detriment, and has helped to create in government very efficient mechanisms to accelerate the wealth of the nation upward.

Berry's picture
Berry 11 years 43 weeks ago

Has anyone heard about these smart meters for your home electric service? They are a radio frequency microwave meter that communicates to the Smart Grid. If these things take over what will they do with the meter reader, who goes to house to house ? ~ The Smart meter >

cheppalani's picture
cheppalani 11 years 43 weeks ago

In most of the conversations I hear Millianairs, the so called successfull people, saying why you want to punish them with more taxes. Because they are the one who consume most of the resouces of the country. A direct resource tax without any strings attached should be levied across all the resources for individuals, corporations, non-profit/profit organisations without any exceptions/exemptions

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 43 weeks ago

Yes, Berry, I've got one. And I initially had reservations about it because of some reports of people having problems with their electric bills. There was some complaints by people whose electric bills were higher than normal and it outraged some. I don't know what the outcome of that was but, so far, I think my meter is probably not overcharging on KiloWattHours. I've been watching it and so far, so good.

Digital read outs are a little easier to read so you can easily keep watch and confirm that you are being charged the number of KWH you should be charged (if the meter is accurate). The only way to know if it is accurate is to know how to assess what all of your electric devices use.

And I would much rather no one at all went into my back yard to read the manual meters. It is much better that they read them from the streets and not trespass on my property. You never know when some meter man/woman might break a leg stumbling over something and try to sue.

The digital meters let the meter readers read your meters from the street as the signal is broadcast as a digital signal. Don't think the range is much greater than just the street. One of the benefits that they say you have with the digital meters is that you can actually read your electric usage (as recorded by the meter person...I suppose) by going on-line to the electric companies web site. You can get data going back a number of years in order to compare your usage on a yearly or monthly basis.

Years ago, I had bought a WattsUp?Pro to help me assess what electricity various devices use. It tells you a lot of things like voltage, watts, kilowatts, kilowatt hours, and if you enter your price per kilowatt hour for base line, and the price for over base line it will tell you how much your device is costing you per month.

The biggest electricity hogs are the refrigerator, the electric range and oven, the electric clothes I have a gas water heater...I don't need to worry about that. Of course, if I use the air conditioner...that will really pig out on electricity. During the winter, I have ditched using the central forced air furnace even though it is gas and I use electric space heaters for only certain rooms of the house and keep the doors closed or hallways sectioned off with ceiling to floor drapes. So my electric bill is larger than it would need to be in the winter time...but, overall, I manage to waste a lot less energy, electricity and gas combined that I would if I used the gas forced air furnace.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 43 weeks ago

So now it looks like S&P downgraded the US from AAA to AA+. The Republicans are yelling a little louder now that Obama is bad and the Dems are yelling back that the Republicans always want it totally their wreck the social programs. So now interest rates will go up....making the banksters pay more at the Fed (no more .25% interest rates they were getting) and they won't be able to make such a killing on the spread when they buy BRIC bonds with a return of 5-3/4%....awwwwwhhhhh...poor banksters. Of course, they are trying to say that everyone else down the food chain will also have to pay more for what loans?? the banksters would never loan all of that bailout money anyway. And with Wall Street buckling is king....and people's mattresses are getting lumpy...or soon will be!

chef dude's picture
chef dude 11 years 43 weeks ago

The facts are plain to see, the rich continue to get richer and the poor get poorer. Equal opportunity not in every community. Class Warfare is being waged and the majority are drinking the mass media propaganda punch, 3 parts filtering information and 2 parts distorting the truth mix it all together and serve it up with talking heads. Pursuing happiness to the tune of a million or more and then weasling out of paying any taxes is extreme greed on steroids. Freeloaders or leeches in their own pursuit of doing well while enjoying the security, and other benefits of being a Citizen without paying a dime for it. Meanwhile the working class and people who pay their fair share and support them.What lowlifes lurk in our midst.

I wonder, if 1400 millionaires didn't pay taxes. How many other millionaires paid less than their fair share?, simply because they couldn't dodge the tax man as well as his fellows.How many total millionaires are there? The reduced tax percentages are more proof for the argument cut the rich mans taxes and he will put more people to work. As unemployment rises and jobs continue to go overseas or produced by our prisoner labor force the rich are allowed to rob us by taking more profits.The next step is to give millionaires a bonus check based on how well they can avoid paying them just like GE 's tax credit rebate checks.If lower taxes to the elites creates jobs we want the proof.

We are being kicked in the teeth again. The shoe is getting bigger and it ain't made in America anymore. Peace

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 43 weeks ago

Berry: Ok, I watched that youtube video link you gave us and my opinion, having been in electronics most of my life...including military radar systems, radio and tv, ic chip manufacturing, and computers....and I was most amused with this video.

Cell phones and microwave ovens and high voltage lines and weather and/or military radar...haarp...only to mention a few things are much more to worry about. Sticking a cell phone up against your ear all the time may be a problem...but I don't think we have to worry about the digital electric meters or gas meters broadcasting on the little power they do out to the street in front of your house. Cell phones have to at least transmit to the nearest antenna and you stick the cell phones right up to your ear...practically right against you brain.

I used to use a cell phone for work all the time. That was before the concerns about cell phones became well known. It may mean nothing at all but I've noticed that my right ear cartilage is much stiffer than the other ear..and the canal has reduced in size...and it itches a lot compared to the left ear. I always used the cell phone against my right ear. So is there a connection? I don't know but I practically never use my cell phone anymore.

And if you are worried about getting cancer...well, it might be a good idea to get rid of all of the cleaning the right food (or not eat the wrong foods)...stay out of the sun....and a whole bunch of other things. Don't go through the porno scanners at fact, it might be a good idea not to fly at all because you are increasing your exposure to a number of different kinds of radiation up there. If you live in certain parts of the US you are exposed to more radiation than other places...just from the terrain or altitude...the higher you are the more you get...or in desert areas...

Just because this old guy has a gadget that makes a lot of alarming noise when he holds it up to the meter doesn't mean anything except it is good theatrics.

Oh, and "dirty electricity?" That's a good one! Yes, I know you can have noise on electrical lines...all kinds of higher frequency noise (or signals) can be heterodyned or mixed on a 60 cycle line.

Just the same way that the telephone land line can be used at the same time for voice as for DSL (which is a much higher frequency than voice) and with the proper filters they won't interfere with one is possible to use the AC wiring in one's house to serve a dual purpose and transmit other signals as well. I am wondering, myself, if that might not be a way of spying on people...although, perhaps the local transformers might not allow higher frequency signals through unless designed to do so.

You are probably getting more electricity through your body just by the house wiring when you use your appliances. And I get a lot more than that because a high voltage line runs right behind my house. There are certainly more important things to worry about...for your neighborhood aging major gas line rupturing and blowing up and frying half the neighborhood.....contaminated turkey...and a disastrous economy...and the crashed ufo in the north Baltic Sea between Sweden and Norway..(just's really an unusually round outcropping of rocks and nothing more...the aliens have already taken over planet earth and Obama is one of the leaders ;-).

Schmice's picture
Schmice 11 years 43 weeks ago

Part of the plot to take over America by the Uber-wealthy is to shake out nervous investors and later come in to scoop up a greater share of the market at rock bottom prices. Just another way to concentrate wealth even more.

Berry's picture
Berry 11 years 43 weeks ago

Pal > Thanks for your input. I just got drift of these meters and I was just thinking about another possibility of job loss. I do take video's with a grain of salt, unless I find it necessary to do the research in which I aways look for three or more reference points and pin them against each other ,so I may weigh them in. I just never heard of such a thing and was wondering what people are thinking neg~pos if any ).. I do not have one of these beauties, But Again thanks, "Points Well taken.

spudder's picture
spudder 11 years 43 weeks ago

Some one needs to give the I.R.S. the news on these crooks. Perhaps they have not heard they have work to do.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 43 weeks ago

Berry: Yeah, I know what you mean about the potential job loss presented by all of these gadgets. I think about the bank tellers that they don't hire, or let go, because of the ATMs. I think about the grocery checkers that are not hired or let go because of the automated check out counters. And unfortunately, I am hooked on using ATMs but not necessarily the automated check out counters. I seldom have problems with ATMs but those checkout counters are sometimes very I just go to the checkers..half thinking that I am also helping to justify hiring people as checkers. The digital meters..well they still have to send meter readers through the streets, I believe, in order to read the meters...I'm sure that, if they could, they would even do away with that function. I'm just glad that the meter readers no longer have to come onto the property to read the meters. That leaves me free to shoot anyone else who I find on my property...just kidding!! The only way you can do that and maybe get away with it is if the intruder is threatening you with a dangerous weapon and it really is self-defense. Even if they are stealing stuff you can't shoot them. And if they break a leg in the act of stealing from you ...they most likely can sue you....what a

leighmf's picture
leighmf 11 years 43 weeks ago

It's good to be a millionaire,
Try and live elsewise, if you dare.
Those who aren't rich made poor choices,
Home Theatres to escape their voices!

Every lumpy derriere
is lipo-ed if you're millionaire.
Each toenail gleaming in the sun,
dreadful paint the Spa calls "fun."

Why can't we have just one million
so we all can have cotillion?
Just one is all I need forever
Since with nothing I endeavor.


2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 11 years 43 weeks ago

"We The Millionaires" brings to mind the many repeated and HISTORIC failures related to unregulated capitalism. In the end it's always "We The People" that get screwed whether it's getting bankrupted by ass-n-nine wars and tax cuts for the rich, Wall Street fraud/bubbles, or robber barons, it always leads to poverty for millions, high unemployment, general unhappiness, and inequality on all levels.

Speaking of history, many of our founders could read the ancient philosophers in their own Greek language. I'm sure some like Jefferson read the speech Pericles gave at a funeral of some fellow citizens killed during the Peloponnesian wars. Here are some excerpts from his speech........"Our Government is a model for all to copy. Ours is a Democracy, the power is in the hands of the people, IT IS NOT IN THE HANDS OF A SMALL GROUP. Everyone is equal before the law. We do not care what class a man belongs to we care only about his ability. No one is kept from taking part in Government because he is poor. Everyone should have an interest in Govt. We do not say those who are not interested in politics are minding their own business. We say they have no business here at all! MAKE UP YOUR MINDS TO THIS, OUR HAPPINESS DEPENDS ON OUR FREEDOM."

The above words were spoken over 2,400 years ago and I firmly believe our founders wanted to pass this baton of wisdom on in the form of Democracy and were very clear headed about it. Jefferson himself said...."This was the object of the Declartion of Independence. Not to find new principles, or new arguments, never before thought of, not merely to say things which had never been said before; but to place before mankind the common sense of the subject, in terms so plain and so firm as to command their assent, and to justify ourselves in the independent stand we are compelled to take."

Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness are rights the Govt. must make secure by consent of "We the People", not by the consent of Republican extremists who only recgonize and want to secure these rights for only "We the Millionaires."

It's interesting to note that Pericles in 449 BC organized a congress of all Greek States with the idea of creating freedom and peace for all. His Democratic ideals won him many enemys among the conservative aristocrats. In 444 BC they accused him of wasting Govt. money in his public works programs. Public opinion however was on his side, NO FOX NEWS BACK THEN, and his works went forward.The fabulous result was the architectural beauty that remains to this day on the Acropolis. This massive public works project employed architects, sculptors, painters, craftsmen and large numbers of general laborers, a win win situation for all.

Pericles and our Founders were on the the side of right. Todays Republicans are on the side of darkness and whats always historically proven to be wrong. "We the People" must demand an end to the current political barbarities being inflicted by the Republican terrorists and move to a real Democracy, one that is filled with reform of trade policy, ends the purchase of our Govt. buy those with the most money, fair tax laws, a Supreme Court without a radical right agenda, a scaled back military industrial complex- instead with jobs shifting to green energy-" the real battle front."

Will in SF's picture
Will in SF 11 years 43 weeks ago

The Supreme Court is so right-sided it may have lost it's right-mindedness.

That problem is as bad as the non taxation of those who should be happy to give back--give back to the nation that afforded many of them the ability to acquire all that loot.

The whole thing is ... well ... talk about unsustainable--to say that is the absolute least one could say.

Hey all you rich people--send a check to the IRS and put your support in, FOR

"We the American People"

"We" implies you and me as in all of us! It does not imply others without including you.

Thank you in advance

Casiopia2017's picture
Casiopia2017 11 years 42 weeks ago

You got it!

Now we got to get the, Lame News Media ,or Pharma Media ,to tell the real truth to the

American People.

Do you think they would dare go against there "masters" Orders &

Broadcast real News ??

I do not think so,& it will get worst with the Powers of Plutocracy !

spudder's picture
spudder 11 years 42 weeks ago

Dang it anyway

spudder's picture
spudder 11 years 42 weeks ago

We the People say, If they don't want to pay their fair share of taxes to live in this Great Nation, they should simply move to another one where they don't have to put up with all the advantages our tax money provides.

Corvus_sapiens's picture
Corvus_sapiens 11 years 41 weeks ago

@ Godzillasrage Not only does the Constitution not preach anything that could be construed as "Capitalism" (most especially not the current perversion of insisting that rapacious profit-at-any-and-all-cost is the One And Only 'acceptable' business model), but there also in not one thing in the Constitution that prohibits using tax monies to benefit the downtrodden.

It's currently de rigueur, if not Gospel itself, for the right-wing extremists (a given, since the right has booted-out any moderates) to repeatedly claim that "the Constitution enshrines private property", however, that is not correct, and ignores the following facts:

1) Although the phrase "general welfare", as used in the Constitution, means "general/national well-being, prosperity", and not organized public assistance (see: ), the fact remains that, since the Constitution does not specify how this is to be achieved, but *does* specify in Amendment 9 that "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people," it is up to The People, in whom the penultimate authority resides (see: ), to determine how to best achieve that "general Welfare".

2) Even before the Constitution mandates, to the government it created, the promotion of the general welfare, it mandates to that government the duties to "...establish Justice, [and] insure domestic tranquility..."; again, these terms are not defined specifically because the Framers of the Constitution knew - if only through the experience of their own actions - that these concepts evolve over time. For example, although they did not include anti-slavery language in the Constitution due to the need to have it ratified by the Southern states, the Framers did hope that the abolition of slavery would eventually become part of the US Justice system. Additionally, although the mandate to "insure domestic tranquility" was originally intended to " ensure the federal government had powers to squash rebellion and to smooth tensions between states" (see: ), it is also a fact that, for several reasons, there simply can be no prosperity when a population is a continual state of unrest and turmoil. Therefore, justice, and domestic tranquility, must exist in order for Prosperity to develop and thrive. And the fact is that, as shown by the French Revolution, as well as the Union actions in the US in the early 1900's, one of the fastest ways to ensure domestic strife and populist violence is to [a] create a tiny privileged class which owns the great bulk of the nation's wealth yet pays little to none of the costs (taxes) to maintain, and pay the debts of, that nation, and [b] relegate the vast majority of the population to a permanent underclass which is heavily taxed in proportion to wages, and has a continual high rate of unemployment and homelessness with little to no relief.

3) Private Property is not necessarily "enshrined" in the Constitution, at least, it is not made "sacrosanct" in any way near to what is claimed by the proponents of rapacious profit-at-any-and-all-costs capitalism. What it does, in the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments, is say that no person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property *without due process of law*, and that private property cannot be taken for public use *without just compensation*. It remains, however, up to the People's representatives in the Legislature to write and pass those laws, and to the Supreme Court to deal with questions regarding the constitutionality of those laws which are brought before it. This is, in fact, *not* an enshrinement of Capitalism any more than it is a refutation or condemnation of Socialism; indeed, Article I, Section 7, states that "All bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills", and goes on to describe the related procedures for ratification; and Section 8 specifies that "Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes", and finally, "To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof." Nothing therein, or in any other part of the Constitution, specifies anything regarding one or another economic system, especially since Early America was mostly agrarian, and what manufacturing there was, was done, and sold by, artisans. Corporations were looked at askance and not trusted; their actions, and the length of time the could exist, were all *very* restricted, because of Early America's experience with the East India Company. -- However, as the United States' own Civil War simmered and then finally boiled over, that distrust was overshadowed by the practical need for the armaments, uniforms, means of transportation, and other goods that the new machinery of the Industrial Revolution could produce in mass quantities and in record time. As the factory owners became wealthier, they sought to consolidate and entrench their position in society and the nation, and pushed harder than ever to use the non-specificity of the Constitution to their own advantage. One such tactic was the pressure to shift a corporation away from being a legal entity of limited action and time-span, and towards the notion of "personhood", even though the Fourteenth Amendment was completely specific in defining a "person" as being "born or naturalized in the United States". Specifically, the fantasy of "corporate personhood" gelled on the basis, *not* of any Court decision, but rather, on the inaccurate summary (a.k.a. "headnotes") of the case entered into the record by a pro-corporation Court Clerk, which was "creatively" (i.e., mendaciously) worded in a way that made it *seem* that the Court had declared its acceptance of "corporate personhood". (For more details, see: , , , , and others).

As much as the right wing likes to deny the above, and likes to call commentors such as myself "stupid" and/or "commie" and/or "an enemy of capitalism", a closer examination of history, sociology, psychology, and practical economics reveals that the only *sustainable* business model is *not* the rapacious mega-corporations (whose mergers and acquisitions eliminate jobs, and whose bottom-line absolutism continues to ship ever-more American jobs elsewhere), but rather, something closer to the Early American artisans and community-based business-owners, making a living from the modest profit gained by offering high-quality goods to their neighbors at fair prices, and paying those neighbors who worked in those businesses a fair wage. *That* is the business model based upon *true* American values of justice, equal opportunity, equality before the law, neighborliness, and the balance of individualism with cooperation.

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