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●The more federal budgets are cut and taxes increased, the weaker an economy becomes.
●Austerity is the government’s method for widening the gap between rich and poor, which ultimately leads to civil disorder.
●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.
●Those, who do not understand the differences between Monetary Sovereignty and monetary non-sovereignty, do not understand economics.
●The penalty for ignorance is slavery.
●Everything in economics devolves to motive.
The U.S. Congress, as a political system, is broken. It does not and cannot work.
The House of Representatives is broken because of Gerrymandering. Supposedly illegal, Gerrymandering never is challenged.
So, Representatives no longer worry about the needs or desires of the nation. They need only to please their tiny, local constituency, no matter how wrong-headed, bigoted or harmful those narrow beliefs might be.
The Senate is broken by the filibuster, which allows any one Senator to block all action by Congress. The filibustering Senator no longer needs even to stand and talk. He just notifies the Senate that he’s filibustering — then takes a nap, while the nation waits.
Yesterday, the Senate’s Democratic majority voted to modify the Republican’s use of the filibuster to block some Presidential nominations.
Sides have been taken and threats delivered. But what is missing from the discussion? Here are excerpts from an article in the 1/22/13 Chicago Tribune:
Democrats made a historic change to Senate rules Thursday, ending the minority party’s ability to use filibusters to block most presidential nominations and, in the process, virtually guaranteeing that the rest of President Obama’s term will be dominated by executive actions and court battles rather than legislation.
What else is new? Up ’til now, Congress has been engaged in anything but legislation.
The Senate Republican minority, which will see its power dramatically curtailed, threatened reprisals.
What “reprisals”? Lack of cooperation? End of bipartisanship? When your entire agenda has been obstructionism, what possible “reprisals” are left?
The decision by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) to deploy the so-called nuclear option means Senate confirmations of presidential appointments — except for Supreme Court justices — will proceed by a simple majority vote. Previously, a 60-vote threshold had become the norm to avoid a filibuster by the minority party. The change does not affect filibusters on legislation.
So legislation still can and will be filibustered, thereby assuring no meaningful legislation will come out of Congress.
“You may regret it a lot sooner than you think,” said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). “It only reinforces the narrative of a party that is willing to do and say just about anything to get its way.”
Not sure to which party he refers. The Republicans have taken great pride in being obstructionists. Back in 2011, when Republicans were so obstructionist they were accused of being the “party of No,” Sarah Palin said, “We’re the party of ‘hell no,'” such was her pride in making nothing happen.
The vote reflected the view of many Democrats that the chance of any major legislation passing the divided Congress over the next year already had dwindled to almost nothing. As a result, Reid and his allies felt they had little to lose.
“We’d much prefer the risk of up-or-down votes and majority rule than the risk of continued total obstruction,” said Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.). “That’s the bottom line no matter who’s in power.”
“I’d rather fight over policy,” said Sen. Mark Begich (D-Alaska), who is running for reelection for the first time in the conservative state. “It’s not a Republican or Democratic issue. It’s that the American people are asking us to fix this system.”
“I recognize that I could be back in the minority again, but that’s OK if that happens,” said Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), who just began a fifth term and who recently decided to support changing the rules. “I want, in the remainder of my five-plus years, to get something done, to be able to get nominees approved, to be able to get bills moved.”
Excuse me Senators, but your “nuclear option” does not include policy. It applies only to appointments. So Congress will continue to do nothing — and to be paid for it.
The move to end filibusters was probably only a matter of time, reflecting the long-term shift in American politics toward ever-greater polarization, particularly over the last two decades.
Even during the Bush Jr. terms, there was compromise. All bipartisanship ended with the Obama Presidency, probably related to his skin color. The red states hate blacks and browns. Making a black Presidency fail follows up very nicely with the old Nixon “Southern Strategy.”
Congress has moved toward a parliamentary system characterized by near-lock-step party voting and deep, consistent ideological differences between the two parties.
Bipartisan coalitions have dwindled, and so have incentives on other side of the aisle to bend the majority party’s agenda. For both parties, winning a majority now comes with heavy pressure from constituents to actually adopt the majority’s program.
And from Yahoo News:
Most recently, Republicans blocked three straight nominees to the powerful U.S. District Court of Appeals, not because of any qualms with the candidates’ credentials, but merely because they didn’t want Obama filling vacancies on an influential court that tilts conservative.
Translation: “The candidates are fine, but we don’t want them because Obama appointed them. We don’t want anything Obama.
Outraged Republicans vowed retribution, saying they would use the process to stack future courts in their favor once they’re back in control.
What? If the Republicans gain power, they threaten to stack the courts with right wing extremists? Hard to believe. And I was so sure they would appoint bleeding-heart liberals — like Thomas, Scalia and Alito, for instance.
Anyway, what is missing from all this? You are. There is no mention of what is good for you as Americans. The only concern is beating the other party, and saying “No” to anything the other party wants.
The filibuster has become a system for doing nothing. We didn’t send representatives to Congress just to obstruct and do nothing. They don’t receive generous salaries, expenses and perks just to sit on their hands.
The filibuster supposedly prevented one of the great disadvantages of a democratic system — the majority exercising dictatorial powers over the minority. But, in recent use, the filibuster has created the opposite problem: The minority exercising dictatorial power over the majority.
The filibuster has become an anachronism in a nation where winning is everything, and to hell with the American people (except for the rich, who always get their way).
Unfortunately, the filibuster remains for legislation, so look forward to continuing obstructionism.
Congress is broken. The system has been “gamed” by those whose sole concern is power. The result will be a continued widening of the gap between the rich and the rest.
And as for you, nobody even thinks about you. You are like a bag of popcorn at a football game. Both coaches care only about winning.
Neither coach — and neither party — cares about you.
Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Nine Steps to Prosperity:
1. Eliminate FICA (Click here)
2. Medicare — parts A, B & D plus long term nursing care — for everyone (Click here)
3. Send every American citizen an annual check for $5,000 or give every state $5,000 per capita (Click here)
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. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99% (Click here)
9. Federal ownership of all banks (Click here)
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.
Two key equations in economics:
1. Federal Deficits – Net Imports = Net Private Savings
2. Gross Domestic Product = Federal Spending + Private Investment and Consumption – Net Imports
THE RECESSION CLOCK
As the federal deficit growth lines drop, we approach recession, which will be cured only when the lines rise.