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Showing posts from October 12, 2008

The Next Big Lie: We Can't Afford Social Security! (So, Privatize the Whole Thing)

In any decent society, there must be enough money to take care of sick and old people in our total economy, and if there isn't, that's ultimately a failure of the system, not of "entitlement programs" as such.

You can read up on Walker here. Since he's now the President and CEO of something called The Peter G. Peterson Foundation -- and Peterson was a Bush Pioneer -- which was set up by an investment firm called The Blackstone Group, I smell a rat. I think it's the same class-warfare rat we've always had, but this one stems specifically since David Stockman and the Reagan Reaction. That is, use conscious fiscal irresponsibility, and pure lies, to scare the non-rich into shifting capital from themselves to the rich.

And, lo and behold, Peterson is indeed a rat: Vicious Ideologue Renews Attack on Social Security.

Now, on the heels of a huge fiscal crisis caused by private investment banks, these bastards, who have balls the size of asteroids, now start screami…

Rescue for the Few, Debt Slavery for the Many, By Michael Hudson

We are now entering the financial End Time. Bailout “Plan A” (buy the junk mortgages) has failed, “Plan B” (buy ersatz stocks in the banks to recapitalize them without wiping out current mismanagers) is fizzling, and the debts still can’t be paid. That is the reality Wall Street avoids confronting. “First they ignore you, then they denounce you, and then they say that they knew what you were saying all the time,” said Gandhi. The same might be said of today’s overhang of debts in excess of the economy’s ability to pay. First the policy makers pretend that they can be paid, then they denounce the pessimists as spreading panic, and then they say that of course students have been taught for four thousand years now how the “magic of compound interest” keeps on doubling and redoubling debts faster than the economy can squeeze out an economic surplus to pay.What has ended is the idea that “the magic of compound interest” can make economies rich without having to work and without industry. I…

The Derivatives Game, By Ralph Nader

The derivatives markets of today have become a high stakes casino of unimaginable magnitude. Wall Street's bets have gone bad, and now the whole financial system is in peril. In a best-case scenario, it appears, the taxpayers will be required to rescue the system from itself. This is why Warren Buffett labeled derivatives "weapons of financial mass destruction."Amazingly, there seems to be some lingering sense that current-day derivatives properly perform an insurance function.Case in point: Alan Greenspan, the former Federal Reserve Chairman. Greenspan says the world is facing “the type of wrenching financial crisis that comes along only once in a century,” but, reports the New York Times, "his faith in derivatives remains unshaken." Greenspan believes that the problem is not with derivatives, but that the people using them got greedy, according to the Times.This is quite a view. Is it a surprise to Alan Greenspan that the people on Wall Street -- said to be r…

America’s Political Cannibalism, Chris Hedges, Truthdig

Posted on Oct 13, 2008By Chris Hedges It is no longer our economy but our democracy that is in peril. It was the economic meltdown of Yugoslavia that gave us Slobodan Milosevic. It was the collapse of the Weimar Republic that vomited up Adolf Hitler. And it was the breakdown in czarist Russia that opened the door for Vladimir Lenin and the Bolsheviks. Financial collapses lead to political extremism. The rage bubbling up from our impoverished and disenfranchised working class, glimpsed at John McCain rallies, presages a looming and dangerous right-wing backlash. As the public begins to grasp the depth of the betrayal and abuse by our ruling class, as the Democratic and Republican parties are exposed as craven tools of our corporate state, as savings accounts, college funds and retirement plans become worthless, as unemployment skyrockets and as home values go up in smoke, we must prepare for the political resurgence of a reinvigorated radical Christian right. The engine of this mass m…

Governments got religion after peering into the systemic meltdown abyss: aggressive and comprehensive policy action is now likely, Nouriel Roubini

...but significant downside risks to markets will remainI spent the weekend in Washington attending the IMF annual meetings and giving a series of talks in a variety of public and private fora (IADB talk, C-Span interview, Euro 50 Group meeting, IMF panel, etc.). After last week crash in stock markets and financial markets (and it was indeed a crash as during the week equity prices fell as much as the two day crash of 1929) policy makers finally realized the risk of a systemic financial meltdown, they peered into the systemic collapse abyss a few steps in front of them and finally got religion and started announcing radical policy actions (the G7 statement, the EU leaders agreement to bailout European banks, the British plan to rescue – and partially nationalize - its banks, the European countries plans along the same lines, and the Treasury plan to ditch the initial TARP that was aimed only buying toxic assets in favor of plan to recapitalize – i.e. partially nationalize – US banks a…

Meet Sarah Palin's radical right-wing pals, Max Blumenthal

More here:
Max Blumenthal on Sarah Palin’s Radical Right-Wing Pals and Her Ties to the Pro-Secessionist Alaskan Independence PartyAs the McCain campaign continues to focus on Senator Obama’s alleged ties to former Weather Underground member William Ayers, a new investigation in Salon.com sheds light on how Governor Palin’s ties to the radical right are far deeper than previously thought. Journalists Max Blumenthal and David Neiwert detail how Palin was elected Mayor of Wasilla over a decade ago with the help of activists from the Alaska Independence Party and the John Birch Society. They allege that she tried to return the favor later by attempting to appoint one of them to an empty city council seat. [includes rush transcript–partial]Former McCain Supporter Accuses the Senator of "Deliberately Feeding the Most Unhinged Elements of Our Society the Red Meat of Hate"Frank Schaeffer is the bestselling author of Crazy for God: How I Grew Up as One of the Elect, Helped Found the R…