–Message from the rich: The U.S. Treasury is running short of dollars Monday, Aug 31 2015 

Twitter: @rodgermitchell; Search #monetarysovereignty
Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

Mitchell’s laws:
•Those, who do not understand the differences between Monetary Sovereignty and monetary non-sovereignty, do not understand economics.
•Any monetarily NON-sovereign government — be it city, county, state or nation — that runs an ongoing trade deficit, eventually will run out of money.
•The more federal budgets are cut and taxes increased, the weaker an economy becomes. .
Liberals think the purpose of government is to protect the poor and powerless from the rich and powerful. Conservatives think the purpose of government is to protect the rich and powerful from the poor and powerless.
•The single most important problem in economics is
the Gap between rich and poor.
•Austerity is the government’s method for widening
the Gap between rich and poor.
•Until the 99% understand the need for federal deficits, the upper 1% will rule.
•Everything in economics devolves to motive, and the motive is the Gap between the rich and the rest..

===================================================================================================================================================================================================================================================================================

Here are a few shameless quotes from this month’s Congressional Budget Office bulletin, as written by America’s richest.

As of March 15 (2015), the Treasury has (had) no room to borrow.

The debt limit—commonly referred to as the debt ceiling—is the maximum amount of debt that the Department of the Treasury can issue to the public and to other federal agencies.

That amount is set by law and has been increased over the years in order to finance the government’s operations.

The statement is mathematically illogical and factually wrong. Those of you who already understand Monetary Sovereignty are aware the federal debt does not, and cannot, finance the government’s operations.

First the mathematics. Federal debt is the total of T-securities — securities bought by non-government entities and by government agencies. The “debt” is nothing more than bank deposits in T-security accounts at the Federal Reserve Bank.

From where do these buyers obtain the dollars with which to buy T-securities and make these bank deposits?

All dollars come from two sources: Federal deficit spending and bank lending.

But where do the banks obtain the dollars to lend? Yes, they create most, but they must begin with “reserves.” These reserves come from the public in the form of deposits, and from the Federal Reserve Bank.

From where does the public obtain dollars to make deposits?

Bottom line: The initial source of all dollars is the Federal government. It is the federal government that, back in the 1770’s, created the first dollars from thin air. And it is the federal government that continues to create dollars from thin air, simply by paying bills.

Were it not for federal deficit spending, U.S. dollars could not exist.

The government is able to deficit spend endlessly because it is Monetarily Sovereign, i.e. sovereign over its own currency, the U.S. dollar. Being sovereign, the government can do anything it wishes with dollars.

It can create dollars endlessly (via deficit spending). It can destroy dollars (via taxing). It can change the value of dollars (via interest rate control).

Being Monetarily Sovereign, the federal government never needs to ask anyone for dollars — not you, not me, not China.

Contrary to the CBO’s implications, the U.S. Treasury never can run short of dollars unless Congress wills it.

Although dollar bills technically are not in themselves dollars (They are titles to dollars, much like car titles and house titles), the federal government can print all the dollar bills is wishes.

Being Monetarily Sovereign, the federal government makes the rules. If it wished, the federal government could print a trillion, trillion $100 bills and distribute them tomorrow. These bills would be legal tender for all debts. In short, you could use them the same way you use the dollars in your wallet.

Yes, that could cause an inflation, and yes, that is not how dollars are created. But the point is, the federal government cannot run short of its own sovereign currency — unless Congress and the President want that to happen.

The fact that Congress is able to increase the debt ceiling every year is proof there is no limit to the government’s ability to create dollars.

If the federal government did not create dollars, there would be no dollars for banks to lend and there would be no dollars with which to purchase T-securities (aka federal “debt”).

How does the federal government create dollars by paying bills?

To pay a bill, the government sends checks and wires to the creditors’ banks. These checks and wires are not money; they are instructions, telling the banks to increase the balances in the creditors’ checking accounts.

The instant the banks obey those instructions, and credit the accounts, dollars are created. The money supply (M1 and M2) increases. The Treasury creates dollars by sending instructions to banks.

The Congressional Budget Office projects that if the debt limit remains unchanged, the Treasury will run out of cash between mid-November and early December.

This sentence more properly should read, “If Congress prevents the Treasury from creating dollars, the Treasury will run out of cash between mid-November and early December.

On March 16, the debt limit was reset to $18.113 trillion to match the amount of outstanding debt.

Translation: Congress decided it doesn’t want the Treasury to create any more money. The point is not that the Treasury is unable to create all the money it wishes. The point is simply that Congress, at the behest of rich donors, doesn’t want the Treasury to create money to pay for benefits to the middle class and the poor (the “99%”).

This is not a financial decision. It is a political decision. Congress essentially is stamping its feet and saying, “I’ll take my ball and go home unless you give me my way.”

The annual battle over the debt ceiling is an extortion game, in which one party threatens to shut down the government unless certain laws are passed. And these laws may have little to nothing to do with financing.

Whenever you read that certain federal spending is “unaffordable” or “unsustainable,” you are witnessing the Big Lie.

The purpose of the the Big Lie: To fool you into believing certain benefits must be cut — i.e. Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, poverty aids, education aids, etc.

It is the wealthy political contributors who want your benefits cut.

What Makes Up the Debt Subject to Limit?
Debt subject to the statutory limit consists of two main components: debt held by the public and debt held by government accounts.

Get it? Congress has limited the amount of T-securities it can sell to itself!

Congress includes under the misleading term “debt,” the amount of money the government has “borrowed” from itself. The purpose: To make the “debt” look more ominous.

If your left hand borrowed $100 from your right hand, would you have any difficulty paying the debt? Of course not. But Congress wants you to believe internal debt is some sort of threat or burden.

Of the $18.1 trillion in outstanding debt subject to limit, $13.1 trillion was held by the public and $5.0 trillion was held by government accounts as of July 31, 2015.

So, not only is the misnamed “debt” a phony issue, but the $18.1 trillion debt is a phony figure.

If the debt limit is not increased, the Treasury will not be authorized to issue additional debt that increases the amount outstanding.

That restriction would ultimately lead to delays of payments for government activities, a default on the government’s debt obligations, or both.

By CBO’s estimate, the Treasury would most likely be able to continue borrowing and have sufficient cash to make its usual payments through mid-November or early December without an increase in the debt limit.

Translation: If Congress fails to increase the “debt” ceiling, that is tantamount to Congress voting to cut Social Security and Medicare payments, military salaries, all other federal salaries and all other payments.

The “debt ceiling” is Congress’s method for cutting benefits to the 99%, without leaving any fingerprints.

Your senators and representatives fear being blamed for benefit cuts, so they pretend the government can’t afford these benefits. The “debt ceiling” provides a handy, no-blame excuse.

Why would Congress do that?

Because that is what the rich of America want.

The rich are rich only because of the Gap between them and the rest of us.

If there were no Gap, i.e. if everyone had the same amount of money, no one would be rich. And the wider the Gap, the richer the rich are.

More than money, the rich want relative power. An easy way for the rich to increase their relative power is to decrease the wealth of the 99% — i.e. to take away your money.

So the rich pay Congress (via campaign contributions) to cut Social Security, cut Medicare, cut Medicaid, cut federal payrolls and cut all other federal benefits to the 99%, under the pretense these benefits are “unaffordable” and “unsustainable.”

They call it “fiscal prudence.”

And they call T-securities “debt” rather than more properly “assets of the economy,” (for that is exactly what T-securities are: Assets of the economy.)

The rich know you always want to cut “debt,” but never would want to cut “assets of the economy.”

So it all is a gigantic con game, with the CBO (being an agency ruled by Congress) as a player.

You are supposed to believe that federal “debt,” (even “debt” owed to itself), is imprudent and must be cut, when in fact, cutting the debt takes dollars out of your pocket and leads to recessions and depressions, while it widens the Gap between the rich and you.

And in a great feat of cynicism and irony, the politicians pretend your children and grandchildren will have to pay the debt, when in fact, your children and grandchildren will pay for the lack of federal deficit spending.

Your children and grandchildren will be punished by needless reductions federal deficit spending, all because the rich instruct Congress to tell you the Treasury is running short of its own sovereign currency, the dollar.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty

===================================================================================
Ten Steps to Prosperity:
1. Eliminate FICA (Click here)
2. Federally funded Medicare — parts A, B & D plus long term nursing care — for everyone (Click here)
3. Provide an Economic Bonus to every man, woman and child in America, and/or every state a per capita Economic Bonus. (Click here) Or institute a reverse income tax.
4. Free education (including post-grad) for everyone. Click here
5. Salary for attending school (Click here)
6. Eliminate corporate taxes (Click here)
7. Increase the standard income tax deduction annually
8. Tax the very rich (.1%) more, with higher, progressive tax rates on all forms of income. (Click here)
9. Federal ownership of all banks (Click here and here)

10. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99% (Click here)

The Ten Steps will add dollars to the economy, stimulate the economy, and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest.
——————————————————————————————————————————————

10 Steps to Economic Misery: (Click here:)
1. Maintain or increase the FICA tax..
2. Spread the myth Social Security, Medicare and the U.S. government are insolvent.
3. Cut federal employment in the military, post office, other federal agencies.
4. Broaden the income tax base so more lower income people will pay.
5. Cut financial assistance to the states.
6. Spread the myth federal taxes pay for federal spending.
7. Allow banks to trade for their own accounts; save them when their investments go sour.
8. Never prosecute any banker for criminal activity.
9. Nominate arch conservatives to the Supreme Court.
10. Reduce the federal deficit and debt

No nation can tax itself into prosperity, nor grow without money growth. Monetary Sovereignty: Cutting federal deficits to grow the economy is like applying leeches to cure anemia.
1. A growing economy requires a growing supply of dollars (GDP=Federal Spending + Non-federal Spending + Net Exports)
2. All deficit spending grows the supply of dollars
3. The limit to federal deficit spending is an inflation that cannot be cured with interest rate control.
4. The limit to non-federal deficit spending is the ability to borrow.

THE RECESSION CLOCK
Monetary Sovereignty

Monetary Sovereignty

Vertical gray bars mark recessions.

As the federal deficit growth lines drop, we approach recession, which will be cured only when the growth lines rise. Increasing federal deficit growth (aka “stimulus”) is necessary for long-term economic growth.

#MONETARYSOVEREIGNTY

–What could be worse than this Congressional bitter disagreement ? Wednesday, Mar 25 2015 

Twitter: @rodgermitchell; Search #monetarysovereignty
Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

Mitchell’s laws:
●Those, who do not understand the differences between Monetary Sovereignty and monetary non-sovereignty, do not understand economics.
●The more federal budgets are cut and taxes increased, the weaker an economy becomes. .
Liberals think the purpose of government is to protect the poor and powerless from the rich and powerful. Conservatives think the purpose of government is to protect the rich and powerful from the poor and powerless.
●Austerity is the government’s method for widening
the gap between rich and poor.
●Until the 99% understand the need for federal deficits, the upper 1% will rule.
To survive long term, a monetarily non-sovereign government must have a positive balance of payments.
●Everything in economics devolves to motive,
and the motive is the Gap.
==================================================================================================================================================================

Answer: This Congressional joyful, bipartisan smooching.

When the crocodiles smile, you, the public, are being eaten.

House Expected To Pass Major Boehner-Pelosi Deal To Reshape Medicare

An ambitious agreement by Speaker John Boehner and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi to fix a major funding gap in Medicare and make some separate long-term cuts appears in good shape to pass the House.

monetary sovereignty

REDUCING COVERAGE FOR NO REASON. SEE HOW HAPPY THEY ARE.

“It is all shaping up very well on both sides,” said Kevin Smith, a spokesman for Boehner.

At a cost of roughly $210 billion, the bill replaces the “sustainable growth rate” formula to instead give doctors gradual raises while extending the Children’s Health Insurance Program for two years starting in October.

It includes $70 billion in offsets by making two structural changes to cut Medicare spending: force high-income seniors to kick in more for their care and reduce spending on supplemental Medigap plans, specifically “first dollar” coverage.

These “offsets” are based on three lies:

1. FICA funds Medicare benefits (It doesn’t.)
2. The federal government is too broke to pay for Medicare. (It isn’t.)
3. By contrast, you have too much money so you can afford to pay more. (You don’t.)

Our readers, who understand Monetary Sovereignty, know that FICA does not fund Medicare.

Just to be clear: FEDERAL TAXES DO NOT FUND FEDERAL SPENDING. Period.

Even if all federal taxes fell to $0, the government could continue to pay all its bills — including Medicare for every man, woman and child in America — forever.

So why does the government charge you FICA, and why will the government cut Medicare benefits further? Because FICA is the most regressive tax in America, punishing the middle- and lower-income groups far more than the rich. This helps widen the Gap between the rich and the rest, the single most important goal of the rich.

Why do both parties wish to help the rich increase the Gap? Because both parties are bribed via campaign contributions, plus promises of lucrative employment, later. (Thank you, right-wing Supreme Court.)

The rest of the legislation is not paid for, which could be a deal-breaker for hardline conservatives in the House and Senate.

Translation: Hard line conservatives are not satisfied with just draining your blood. They want to cut out your flesh and bones, too.

Progressives don’t love the Medicare cuts but many Democrats are willing to accept them because they don’t touch core benefits for middle-class Americans.

Translation: We Democrats pretend to be your friends, but all we want is your vote. We plan to go along with the Republicans every year, to slice bits off Medicare, because as they told you, “Medicare is broke.” The Republicans give us cover. Aren’t we clever?

So long as you’re stupid enough to vote for us, we’ll just keep slicing those benefits — increase the age, reduce the payments — soon we’ll tax benefits, like we do with Social Security.

The rich won’t care. Medical costs are a minuscule part of their income, but a big part of yours.

Senate Republicans are eager to get rid of the “doc fix” problem, and the long-term Medicare cuts in the House package are an enticement for them.

Translation: The doctors have a powerful lobby, and they contribute lots of money to us. What’s your lobby? How much do you contribute?

Republicans have been aching to cut your Medicare benefits, so this gives us Democrats an excuse to give them what the rich want.

Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC) said, “I’ve been working on entitlement reform since I got here 21 years ago. This is the first real hope at getting entitlement reform and in the process taking care of the SGR which we’ve always known was a mythical cut.”

Translation: In conservative-speak, the word “reform” always means: “Screw the poor and the middle class.”

Thus entitlement “reform” means cut Social Security benefits, cut Medicare benefits, cut Medicaid benefits, cut unemployment compensation, cut food stamps, and cut all other poverty aids.

Similarly, tax “reform” means charging the poor and the middle more, via regressive programs like a flat tax, increases in FICA and sales taxes, and the sneakiest one of all: Making the monetarily non-sovereign states and cities pay for things the federal government should fund (Example: Education.)

Any time you hear a politician use the word “reform,” grab your wallet and scream, “Liar, liar, pants on fire.”

Predition: Shortly after (like, the next day after) 2016 elections, the politicians will, at the urging of their rich benefactors, “discover” that once again, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, all poverty aids and taxes need to be “reformed.”

Once again you will be treated to the Big Lie that the federal government is “broke,” while you are rich, and that federal spending is limited by federal tax collections.

And because you will believe it (and probably become angry at anyone who disagrees), your taxes will rise, your benefits will fall, and the income/wealth/power Gap between you and the rich will grow.

You’re being raped. I hope you enjoy it.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty

===================================================================================
The Ten Steps to Prosperity:

1. Eliminate FICA (Click here)
2. Federally funded Medicare — parts A, B & D plus long term nursing care — for everyone (Click here)
3. Provide an Economic Bonus to every man, woman and child in America, and/or every state a per capita Economic Bonus. (Click here) Or institute a reverse income tax.
4. Federally funded, free education (including post-grad) for everyone. Click here
5. Salary for attending school (Click here)
6. Eliminate corporate taxes (Click here)
7. Increase the standard income tax deduction annually. (Refer to this.)
8. Tax the very rich (.1%) more, with higher, progressive tax rates on all forms of income. (Click here)
9. Federal ownership of all banks (Click here and here)
10. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99% (Click here)

Initiating The Ten Steps sequentially will add dollars to the economy, stimulate the economy, and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest.
——————————————————————————————————————————————

10 Steps to Economic Misery: (Click here:)
1. Maintain or increase the FICA tax..
2. Spread the myth Social Security, Medicare and the U.S. government are insolvent.
3. Cut federal employment in the military, post office, other federal agencies.
4. Broaden the income tax base so more lower income people will pay.
5. Cut financial assistance to the states.
6. Spread the myth federal taxes pay for federal spending.
7. Allow banks to trade for their own accounts; save them when their investments go sour.
8. Never prosecute any banker for criminal activity.
9. Nominate arch conservatives to the Supreme Court.
10. Reduce the federal deficit and debt

No nation can tax itself into prosperity, nor grow without money growth. Monetary Sovereignty: Cutting federal deficits to grow the economy is like applying leeches to cure anemia.
1. A growing economy requires a growing supply of dollars (GDP=Federal Spending + Non-federal Spending + Net Exports)
2. All deficit spending grows the supply of dollars
3. The limit to federal deficit spending is an inflation that cannot be cured with interest rate control.
4. The limit to non-federal deficit spending is the ability to borrow.

THE RECESSION CLOCK
Monetary Sovereignty

Monetary Sovereignty

Vertical gray bars mark recessions.

As the federal deficit growth lines drop, we approach recession, which will be cured only when the growth lines rise. Increasing federal deficit growth (aka “stimulus”) is necessary for long-term economic growth.

#MONETARYSOVEREIGNTY

–Liberty U. students support Republican Ted Cruz — maybe. Monday, Mar 23 2015 

Twitter: @rodgermitchell; Search #monetarysovereignty
Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

Mitchell’s laws:
●Those, who do not understand the differences between Monetary Sovereignty and monetary non-sovereignty, do not understand economics.
●The more federal budgets are cut and taxes increased, the weaker an economy becomes. .
Liberals think the purpose of government is to protect the poor and powerless from the rich and powerful. Conservatives think the purpose of government is to protect the rich and powerful from the poor and powerless.
●Austerity is the government’s method for widening
the gap between rich and poor.
●Until the 99% understand the need for federal deficits, the upper 1% will rule.
To survive long term, a monetarily non-sovereign government must have a positive balance of payments.
●Everything in economics devolves to motive,
and the motive is the Gap.
==================================================================================================================================================================
Here is a perfect Fox “News” moment:

Liberty U. Students Forced to Attend Ted Cruz Speech

All Liberty students are obligated to show up for convocations on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Absenteeism results in “four reprimands and a $10 fine,” according to student Daniel Joseph Hayes.

Hayes complained that Cruz’s decision to make his announcement at a Liberty U. convocation was “starkly deceptive,” since it might appear to outside observers that throngs of students had decided to support Cruz of their own volition. He wrote, according to Bloomberg:

I strongly object to Senator Cruz’s choice of venue for the announcement of his 2016 presidential bid: as is well-known by Liberty University students but considerably less well-known by the general public, all students are required to attend convocation every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Sen. Cruz is a friend of the Liberty University administration and has spoken at convocation in the past. As such, he knows that all students are required to be in attendance.

I bear no ill will toward Sen. Cruz, but his choice to announce his 2016 presidential bid at convocation at Liberty University is a starkly deceptive one.

Should the general public be unaware that all students are required to attend convocation, it would seem to the average viewer (as this will be televised and is already being widely publicized) that 10,000 supporters came to Liberty University to hear Sen. Cruz’s announcement. However, every student in attendance has no say in the matter.

Students will either attend convocation and lend to the illusion of widespread support for Sen. Cruz, or they will be subject to administrative punishment–specifically, four reprimands and a $10 fine–if they are absent.

While Sen. Cruz has every right to run for president and to announce his candidacy, it is a highly deceptive, albeit politically savvy, move on Sen. Cruz’s part to make his big announcement here.

I do not support this action, and I am not alone in my belief that such deception is wrong.

There’s something vexing about an institution with “liberty” in its name requiring attendance at a political event.

Ah, clever Ted, on “Cruz control.” The campaign begins.

Bet you won’t hear about this from Sean Hannity.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty

===================================================================================
The Ten Steps to Prosperity:

1. Eliminate FICA (Click here)
2. Federally funded Medicare — parts A, B & D plus long term nursing care — for everyone (Click here)
3. Provide an Economic Bonus to every man, woman and child in America, and/or every state a per capita Economic Bonus. (Click here) Or institute a reverse income tax.
4. Federally funded, free education (including post-grad) for everyone. Click here
5. Salary for attending school (Click here)
6. Eliminate corporate taxes (Click here)
7. Increase the standard income tax deduction annually. (Refer to this.)
8. Tax the very rich (.1%) more, with higher, progressive tax rates on all forms of income. (Click here)
9. Federal ownership of all banks (Click here and here)
10. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99% (Click here)

Initiating The Ten Steps sequentially will add dollars to the economy, stimulate the economy, and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest.
——————————————————————————————————————————————

10 Steps to Economic Misery: (Click here:)
1. Maintain or increase the FICA tax..
2. Spread the myth Social Security, Medicare and the U.S. government are insolvent.
3. Cut federal employment in the military, post office, other federal agencies.
4. Broaden the income tax base so more lower income people will pay.
5. Cut financial assistance to the states.
6. Spread the myth federal taxes pay for federal spending.
7. Allow banks to trade for their own accounts; save them when their investments go sour.
8. Never prosecute any banker for criminal activity.
9. Nominate arch conservatives to the Supreme Court.
10. Reduce the federal deficit and debt

No nation can tax itself into prosperity, nor grow without money growth. Monetary Sovereignty: Cutting federal deficits to grow the economy is like applying leeches to cure anemia.
1. A growing economy requires a growing supply of dollars (GDP=Federal Spending + Non-federal Spending + Net Exports)
2. All deficit spending grows the supply of dollars
3. The limit to federal deficit spending is an inflation that cannot be cured with interest rate control.
4. The limit to non-federal deficit spending is the ability to borrow.

THE RECESSION CLOCK
Monetary Sovereignty

Monetary Sovereignty

Vertical gray bars mark recessions.

As the federal deficit growth lines drop, we approach recession, which will be cured only when the growth lines rise. Increasing federal deficit growth (aka “stimulus”) is necessary for long-term economic growth.

#MONETARYSOVEREIGNTY

–The Gap and the myth of the zero-sum game Sunday, Mar 22 2015 

Twitter: @rodgermitchell; Search #monetarysovereignty
Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

Mitchell’s laws:
●Those, who do not understand the differences between Monetary Sovereignty and monetary non-sovereignty, do not understand economics.
●The more federal budgets are cut and taxes increased, the weaker an economy becomes. .
Liberals think the purpose of government is to protect the poor and powerless from the rich and powerful. Conservatives think the purpose of government is to protect the rich and powerful from the poor and powerless.
●Austerity is the government’s method for widening
the gap between rich and poor.
●Until the 99% understand the need for federal deficits, the upper 1% will rule.
To survive long term, a monetarily non-sovereign government must have a positive balance of payments.
●Everything in economics devolves to motive,
and the motive is the Gap.
==================================================================================================================================================================

We often have written about the “Gap.” It is the distance between the rich and the poor, between the wealthy and the lacking, between the powerful and the powerless.

If there were no Gap, no one would be rich and no one would be poor. The wider the Gap, the richer are the rich and the poorer are the poor.

monetary sovereignty

The Gap is growing.

The Gap is the single, most serious problem facing America and the world. It is the primary source of internal strife and of external wars.

Evolution has made our fear stronger than our desires. We may be thirsty, but we resist going to a river filled with hidden crocodiles.

For every income group, the fear of falling to a lower level is greater than the desire to rise higher.

The rich want to expand the Gap, because it is what makes them rich, and more importantly, a widening Gap keeps them from falling to middle class — their greatest fear.

The middle want to widen Gap below them, because a growing Gap provides comfortable separation from the poor. Even the poor want the Gap, because it allows them to feel superior to the very poor.

Next to sickness, the greatest fear of the retired person is running short of money, and so, falling into a lower wealth group.

Which brings us to an excellent article in the March, 2015 issue of NewScientist Magazine. Here are a few excerpts, plus our thoughts.

Migrants and asylum seekers are not a zero-sum game
06 March 2015 by Victoria Esses

An unfounded fear of competition is driving anti-immigration sentiment in the West.

It’s not exactly competition the anti-immigrants fear. The rich aren’t afraid of competition, because in reality, there is no competition for the rich.

The fear is that the immigrants will narrow that Gap, by being smart, hard-working, motivated people — in short, being assets to America and the American economy. So the rich invent excuses to keep these people down or out.

Of course, the middle- and lower-groups do fear the competition, so they eagerly accept the excuses offered by the rich.

IN SEPTEMBER 2014, tens of thousands of unaccompanied children from Central America had crossed the Mexican border illegally. There were polarised, angry debates on how to respond. President Obama called the issue a “humanitarian crisis” and worked to house and feed the children.

Others opposed using US resources to care for them.

These “others” would have opposed using any resources, even foreign resources. In reality, it was not the resources that concerned them.

Remember, federal tax dollars do not fund federal spending. The notion that federal taxpayers’ dollars support poor immigrants simply is wrong. America could support immigrants with no taxes at all.

Even understanding that would not change the prejudices of the populace.

Around the same time, a row erupted in Europe over migrant ships in the Mediterranean. Italy suspended its rescue missions and the UK refused to support a new European Union search and rescue operation, claiming it would encourage more migrants to attempt the crossing.

Aid agencies and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees retorted that such operations were necessary to save lives.

Saving immigrant lives is at the bottom of the priority list for those who already have been blessed with citizenship. It’s the “I’ve got mine” syndrome.

Anti-immigration activists, the media and political elites have created a crisis mentality in which immigrants are portrayed as “enemies at the gate”.

Even legal immigration has become controversial, with groups such as the UK Independence Party proposing stricter controls on migrants from certain parts of the EU.

Legality is the fake justification for keeping the “enemy” outside the gate. After all, the law easily could be changed to make the “illegal” immigrants legal. The anti-immigrant groups don’t want them to be legal, despite all the complaints about illegality.

As a rule, members of socially dominant groups tend to believe that their group is superior and hence entitled to resources and privileges.

To maintain their dominance, they must fend off “invading” groups who are seen as competing with them for finite resources including jobs, political power and cultural and religious influence.

This can occur irrespective of whether there are indeed limited resources and actual competition over them.

This belief in zero-sum competition is central to attitudes about immigration.

“Zero-sum” is the myth the rich teach to the rest of us. It’s the false claim that somehow, the federal government can run short of its own sovereign currency, with which to pay its bills — the false claim that because of immigrants we will run short of money and ideas.

It’s the false claim that immigrants “use up” jobs, when in reality, immigrants create jobs by being consumers.

It’s the false claim that immigrants are a net drag on the economy, when in reality, America was built by immigrants, and still grows, partly because of immigrants.

There is a widespread belief that any gains immigrants make must be at the expense of members of the host society. This belief is deeply embedded in Western society, even though it is seldom justified.

The upshot of these attitudes is hostility toward immigrants, self-aggrandisement – often in the form of nationalism – and support for the exclusion of immigrants and refugees.

Using aliens as scapegoats for the ills of a nation is an old trick, designed to cover up ills with the governing class.

When migrants are allowed to settle in a new country, they are often faced with a dilemma. If they are economically successful, they are seen as having taken jobs or opportunities away from local people; if they are not successful, they are seen as a drain on the system.

Sound familiar? It’s the conservative mantra.

Refugees and asylum seekers are especially likely to be treated with hostility. Research has shown that common themes in the media – including claims that asylum-seekers are “bogus” and associated with criminals, terrorists and disease.

This perception allows some in the host nations to assert that refugees deserve the unfair and inhumane treatment they receive.

The Ebola outbreak, for example, helped to fan the flames of anti-immigration sentiment against Hispanics in the US, even though there were no cases of Ebola in Latin American countries.

The “immigrants are diseased” incantation has been refuted repeatedly, though facts seldom overcome motivated belief. Consider this article:

America’s Long History of Immigrant Scaremongering
Conservatives claim that the young immigrants crossing the border are diseased and pose a dangerous public health risk. It’s a sad American tradition.

Conservative media figures have stoked tensions with wild and dishonest rhetoric on the supposed threat of new arrivals.

“Dengue fever, 50 to 100 million new cases a year of dengue fever worldwide. In Mexico, it is endemic. It’s a terrible disease, for anyone that’s had it,” said Fox News host Marc Siegel, who continued with a warning. “There’s no effective treatment of it. It’s now emerging in Texas because of the immigration crisis.”

Likewise, on her radio show, Laura Ingraham declared, “The government spreads the illegal immigrants across the country, and the disease is spread across the country.”

Rep. Louie Gohmert told conservative publication Newsmax that “we don’t know what diseases they’re bringing in.”

But we do. While a handful of reports suggest there are incoming children with illnesses like measles and tuberculosis, the vast majority of these minors are healthy and vaccinated.

Moreover, according to the Department of Homeland Security, border agents are required to screen “all incoming detainees to screen for any symptoms of contagious diseases of possible public health concern.”

In short, the odds that migrant children would cause a general infection of anything are slim to none, right-wing claims notwithstanding.

These facts are easy to find, but it’s not a surprise that immigration opponents would claim otherwise.

It’s not a surprise, because people will believe what they wish to believe, and conservatives ardently wish to believe anything and everything evil about immigrants, despite the facts.

American University professor Alan M. Kraut in an essay titled “Foreign Bodies: The Perennial Negotiation over Health and Culture in a Nation of Immigrants,” wrote, “the Chinese community of San Francisco found itself under siege (for) fear of bubonic plague.”

“The Irish were charged with bringing cholera to the United States in 1832. Later the Italians were stigmatized for polio. Tuberculosis was called the ‘Jewish disease.’ ”

In 2005, an episode of Lou Dobbs Tonight falsely asserted, “We have some enormous problems with horrendous diseases that are being brought into America by illegal aliens,” including 7,000 cases of leprosy in the past three years.

On his radio show, Bill O’Reilly agreed that immigrants were crossing the border with “tuberculosis, syphillis, and leprosy,” and in 2006, Pat Buchanan claimed “illegal aliens” were responsible for bedbug infestations in “26 states.”

(All) draw from a long history of ugly nativism and prejudice dressed as concern for public health. And you don’t have to be a liberal, or support immigration reform, to see that it’s a disgrace.

Prejudice itself is nothing more than disguised fear of the Gap below, being narrowed. Conservative broadcasters rely on the fear and ignorance of their audiences. Even when lies are discovered, conservative audiences forgive them. (Think of how little, if any, Bill O’Reilly’s repeated lies have cost hom.)

Returning to the NewScientist article:

Countries that integrate immigrants successfully are less likely to feel the stress and more likely to reap the benefits.

Those countries that simply try to slam the door shut are asking for trouble.

Would America be better off without the Chinese? The Japanese? The Germans? The Irish? The Jews? The Eastern Europeans? The Russians? The English?

We are not in a zero-sum game. Immigrants don’t subtract; they add ideas and effort and energy. We need immigrants continually to invigorate the American gene pool.

“Fortress America” is a doomed America.

Remember that the next time you watch or listen to FOX “news” et al. But you are smarter than that, aren’t you.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty

===================================================================================
The Ten Steps to Prosperity:

1. Eliminate FICA (Click here)
2. Federally funded Medicare — parts A, B & D plus long term nursing care — for everyone (Click here)
3. Provide an Economic Bonus to every man, woman and child in America, and/or every state a per capita Economic Bonus. (Click here) Or institute a reverse income tax.
4. Federally funded, free education (including post-grad) for everyone. Click here
5. Salary for attending school (Click here)
6. Eliminate corporate taxes (Click here)
7. Increase the standard income tax deduction annually. (Refer to this.)
8. Tax the very rich (.1%) more, with higher, progressive tax rates on all forms of income. (Click here)
9. Federal ownership of all banks (Click here and here)
10. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99% (Click here)

Initiating The Ten Steps sequentially will add dollars to the economy, stimulate the economy, and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest.
——————————————————————————————————————————————

10 Steps to Economic Misery: (Click here:)
1. Maintain or increase the FICA tax..
2. Spread the myth Social Security, Medicare and the U.S. government are insolvent.
3. Cut federal employment in the military, post office, other federal agencies.
4. Broaden the income tax base so more lower income people will pay.
5. Cut financial assistance to the states.
6. Spread the myth federal taxes pay for federal spending.
7. Allow banks to trade for their own accounts; save them when their investments go sour.
8. Never prosecute any banker for criminal activity.
9. Nominate arch conservatives to the Supreme Court.
10. Reduce the federal deficit and debt

No nation can tax itself into prosperity, nor grow without money growth. Monetary Sovereignty: Cutting federal deficits to grow the economy is like applying leeches to cure anemia.
1. A growing economy requires a growing supply of dollars (GDP=Federal Spending + Non-federal Spending + Net Exports)
2. All deficit spending grows the supply of dollars
3. The limit to federal deficit spending is an inflation that cannot be cured with interest rate control.
4. The limit to non-federal deficit spending is the ability to borrow.

THE RECESSION CLOCK
Monetary Sovereignty

Monetary Sovereignty

Vertical gray bars mark recessions.

As the federal deficit growth lines drop, we approach recession, which will be cured only when the growth lines rise. Increasing federal deficit growth (aka “stimulus”) is necessary for long-term economic growth.

#MONETARYSOVEREIGNTY

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