“Make America Great, Again:” A con job for the gullible

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

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Donald Trump has made his livelihood conning the gullible.

Trump University, Trump steaks, Trump’s Casinos, Trump Shuttle, Trump Mortgage, Trump Vodka were based on smoke and mirrors, and often, gullible investors lost money.

“Make America Great, Again” is a similar con job for the gullible voter. Trump wishes to convince the suckers that America once was “great,” no longer is “great,” but he can make it “great” again.

His plans to “Make America Great, Again” include: Building a gigantic wall between the U.S, and Mexico, deporting innocent men, women and children, taking citizenship away from children born in America, torturing captives, bigotry against Muslims, making healthcare unaffordable for millions, allowing people to own any sort of gun, and “out-dealing” China and Russia.

To those without sense, America’s lack of a giant wall, insufficient bigotry, failing to torture captives and not enough high powered weaponry has caused our fall from greatness, while adding these things will raise us back to greatness.

Which brings us to three questions:

–What exactly is it that makes a nation “great”?
–What made America formerly great that now no longer exists to make us “great”?
–What is being proposed that would return America to greatness?

 

We often think of “great” nations as large and militarily powerful. By that measure, Russia and China would be considered great. Do you agree?

Also, by that measure, the U.S. has been “great” since at least 1940, so there is no reason to “make America great, AGAIN.”

While population size, and military and economic power are important factors, I suggest that the following are the real measures of historical greatness:

Measure #1. A nation is measured great by how its government and its citizens treat the poorest, least powerful of its people.

In America, the Gap between the rich and the rest has grown dramatically.
The higher the GINI ratio, the more unequal is income.

We suffer from a large and growing income and a wealth Gap. But more importantly, it is a power Gap, aided and abetted by the Supreme Court’s “money is speech” decisions, culminating with the Citizens United opinion.

The Supreme Court neither understands nor cares that extreme wealth in politics . . . corrupts the very foundation of one person, one voice, one vote.

The Court always understands abstract concepts that empower corporations and wealthy politicians, but rarely understands abstract concepts that empower individuals and protect democracy.

An argument can be made that America reached the zenith of its greatness during four periods of our history: The Revolutionary War, the Civil War, World War II and the Lyndon Johnson administration.

The three wars were “noble wars” in which we pledged “our lives, our fortune and our sacred honor” to fight against evils — the evil of royal dictatorship, the evil of slavery and the evil of Naziism.

The Lyndon Johnson administration’s record was less pure. In general, he fought against the evils of poverty and bigotry.

Poll taxes (the South’s perennial campaign to disenfranchise the poor, now being repeated with the demand for official picture IDs for voting) were abolished

Johnson signed: The Civil Rights Act, the Economic Opportunity Act, the Voting Rights Act, the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, Medicare, and Medicaid. He appointed a black man, Thurgood Marshall to the Supreme Court (despite long delays and vicious questioning by Southern Senators)

While the Vietnam war deservedly sullied Johnson’s reputation, there never was a period in American history when a President fought so hard and so successfully on behalf of the poor. Johnson’s Vietnam merely demonstrated the imperfections in even the best of us.

Measure #2. A nation is measured as “great” by its moral leadership.

In the short term, there always can be “rational” defenses for realpolitik.

There are “good” excuses to build a wall on our Mexican border, “good” excuses to deport undocumented immigrants, “good” excuses to demand picture IDs for voting, “good” excuses to intern Japanese during WWII, “good” excuses to torture prisoners, “good” excuses to prosecute whistle-blowers, “good” excuses to shoot unarmed black men, and “good” excuses for bigotry against Muslims, other non-Christians, blacks, browns, and gays.

There were “good” excuses for slavery, attacks on abortion providers, universal gun carry and “stand your ground,” refusal to consider a Supreme Court nomination, and cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.

It almost is axiomatic that “good” excuses can be found for every evil.

But a great nation is a moral leader, and morality does not allow “good” excuses to support immoral acts.

Measure #3. A great nation is measured by its scientific leadership.

The human species separates itself from other species by its use of science which is systematic procedures for observation, experimentation, prediction, proof, and disproof. True science should not be determined by political power, influence, prestige, or authority.

In science, the opinions of the king, the Pope, the Bible, and the President are secondary to proven fact. Providing such proof requires education; a great nation is measured by the free, uncompromised education its people receive.

America provides free K-12 education of varying quality. Some of it is tainted by poor school systems, poor teaching skills, and religious or political indoctrination.

The United States spends more per student on education than any other country. In 2014, the Pearson/Economist Intelligence Unit rated US education as 14th best in the world, just behind Russia.

Other surveys place us at 27th out of 34 countries in math performance and 20th in science performance.

Many factors account for the student results, including: Poverty, student home life, curricula, unions, politics and teacher quality.

According to a report published by the U.S. News & World Report, of the top ten colleges and universities in the world, eight are American. Sadly, finances prevent many students from attending college.

In summary, those are my three suggested measures: How a nation treats its poor, moral leadership and scientific leadership.

If you have other measures of national greatness, please submit them in your comments.

Then go to the web sites of the five people still running for President, and see which of them offers specific proposals (not patriotic generalities) that would bring this time in America, historical greatness.

The issues are discussed at:

Donald Trump

Ted Cruz

John Kasich

Hillary Clinton

Bernie Sanders

Based on their specific recommendations, which of the above would be most likely to have a “great” administration?

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty

 

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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 Click here
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 grow the economy, and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and you.
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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

THE RECESSION CLOCK

Recessions begin an average of 2 years after the blue line first dips below zero. A common phenomenon is for the line briefly to dip below zero, then rise above zero, before falling dramatically below zero. There was a brief dip below zero in 2015, followed by another dip – the familiar pre-recession pattern.
Recessions are cured by a rising red line.

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.

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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..

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

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 the rest..
•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..

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY

 

15 thoughts on ““Make America Great, Again:” A con job for the gullible

  1. And this is Ted Cruz’s answer to making America great, again.

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    And then came Donald Trump’s Presidential comment

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    And speaking of a nation’s moral leadership — or lack thereof:

    Republican support for McCarthyism is sometimes literal
    03/23/16 11:20 AM—UPDATED 03/23/16 By Steve Benen

    Exactly three years ago this week, a reporter from the Dallas Morning News told Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) he’s been compared at times to Joe McCarthy. Cruz said that criticism “may be a sign that perhaps we’re doing something right.”

    Three years later, this has come up again, but this time it’s not with the senator himself, but rather it’s one of his national security advisers. TPM noted yesterday:

    Clare Lopez, a national security adviser to Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-TX) presidential campaign, earlier this month said the late Sen. Joseph McCarthy (R-WI) was “spot on” about communists infiltrating the United States government in the 1950s.

    As Republican politics has shifted to the even-further-right, conservatives have begun to rethink their attitudes on McCarthy. Missouri’s Todd Akin, for example, compared himself to McCarthy two years ago, and he meant it in a good way.

    In 2010 in Texas, conservative activists rewriting the state’s curriculum recommended telling students that McCarthy was a hero, “vindicated” by history. Around the same time, Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) endorsed bringing back the House Un-American Activities Committee.

    There even is this on the right-wing: It’s Time to See Joe McCarthy For the Hero He Was

    In fact, McCarthy destroyed hundreds if not thousands of innocent lives, before his insanity became so obvious, even the Republicans couldn’t ignore it.

    Seemingly, the only “freedoms” the right-wing recognizes are: 1) the “freedom” to own, carry and brandish any gun anywhere, and 2) the “freedom” to deprive other races, nationalities and religions of their own the freedoms.

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    And then there is this bit of immorality (actually, illegality):

    While Florida’s Attorney General was reviewing whether to investigate fraud allegations at Trump University, The Donald J. Trump Foundation illegally contributed $25,000 to a political committee supporting her reelection and failed to file the donation with the IRS.

    Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi was considering whether to prosecute Trump and his university for pulling a scam and ripping off students across several states.

    Three days later, the Trump Foundation donated $25,000 to And Justice for All, a pro-Bondi group supporting her 2014 reelection. Not only did Bondi decide not to investigate Trump, she also endorsed him for president last week.

    Hey, coincidences happen.

    According to Allen Weisselberg, chief financial officer of the Trump Organization and the longtime treasurer of Trump’s foundation, a clerk mistakenly made the $25,000 political donation from Trump’s charity instead of his personal funds.

    Get it? Instead of bribing Bondi with foundation money, the clerk was “supposed to” bribe Bondi with Trump’s personal funds.

    Well, that certainly explains it.

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    Back to Cruz (How can any discussion of immorality neglect Cruz?)

    Ted Cruz got flustered today when CBS’ This Morning’s Co-host Norah O’Donnell asked him:
    “How many Muslims are in America?

    Ted Cruz admitted he didn’t know.

    She informed him, “There are three million Muslims in America. Law enforcement is overwhelmed…It’s impractical what you’re suggesting. Also, it doesn’t suggest it would lead to anything.”

    She was referring to the police surveillance program that was initiated after the 9/11 but was disbanded under New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s predecessor, Michael Bloomberg, due to its ineffectiveness.

    The CBS anchor weren’t the only one who found Cruz’s logic ridiculous. Police Commissioner Bill Bratton blasted Cruz for his ignorance on the same program earlier:

    “He doesn’t know what the hell he’s talking about, to be quite frank with you. I have almost one thousand Muslim officers in the NYPD. Ironically, when he’s running around here, we probably have a few Muslim officers guarding him.”

    O.K., so surveilling 3 million Muslims not only is bigoted, but impractical, and unconstitutional. But at least can we torture them?

    Or, can he be allowed to surveil and deport millions of innocent men, women and children? Hey, here’s a thought. Make them build Trump’s wall.

    Aren’t we going to allow the right-wing to have any fun at all??

    Like

      1. Fine, let someone else make that choice.

        I will not vote for Hillary. I will not vote for Trump.

        I will not be a part of this dysfunctional system. And, I will not be ridiculed for my decision.

        Like

        1. Sorry Vincent, but you’re part of this dysfunctional system — we all are.

          You really have only two choices: Suffer it the way it is, or try to change it.

          The next time you feel outraged by some aspect of American government, remember this: You didn’t even try. You didn’t even vote. You just laid back and said, “Take me.”

          Like

          1. Rodger, with all due respect, I disagree with your trite rejoinder.

            When you cannot vote in good conscience for either candidate, the only sane option is to not vote for either candidate.

            Like

  2. When you cannot vote in good conscience for either candidate, the only sane option is to not vote for either candidate. ~ Vincent

    That gives everyone else’s vote more value. ~ RMM

    Nonsense. Presidential elections are determined by the Electoral College, which by its nature gives disproportionate voting power to certain states – favoring the smaller states with more electoral votes per person – or swing states, which can be won by either candidate and are more fiercely contested for each individual vote. Although Citizens United conflates money with free speech, its practical application decreases the value of votes.

    When you cannot vote in good conscience for either candidate, the only moral option is to not vote for either candidate.

    Like

    1. You have just described why you believe voting is useless.

      In any election, there often will be candidates, neither of whom meet all your standards. So not voting is a good option?

      In my opinion, Donald Trump is a shithead, and Sarah Palin is a shithead, but if he were running against her, I would vote for him, the lesser of two shitheads.

      Isn’t that how most elections go?

      Like

      1. Yes, sometimes not voting is a good option. At other times, voting is useless. In 2016, unlike most elections, it is both considering the presumptive candidates Hillary Clinton, a known neoliberal and neocon, and Trump. (I could be surprised if the lunatics in the Republican Party wise up. Nah!)

        Years ago, while living in Nevada, there was a selection on the ballot for “neither of the above”. The State of Nevada legislatively recognized this to be a conscious and viable voting option.

        As a rule, the media spins election results, particularly presidential elections, to mean the majority approves of the winning candidate, as I have never seen an exit poll category that collects data for lesser evil voting. Then, as good citizens, we are expected to honor the public’s choice with the end result being business as usual, only to repeat this folly again four years later – with little change and only at the margins, at best – validating the whole process.

        A presidential candidate does not have to meet all my standards, just two. Will you unequivocally demonstrate your willingness to end US policy of militarism, imperialism, interventions, drone attacks and unprovoked war? Will you unequivocally demonstrate your support for policies that benefit both the middle class and poor?

        Like

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