How Trump got outfoxed and conned by Foxconn Thursday, Jan 31 2019 

Is there anything much more satisfying than a nice, heaping plate of “I told you so”?

The story begins with the world’s greatest businessman and negotiator. I know he is, because he has told me so — many, many times.

Forget his multiple bankruptcies (How does anyone go bankrupt with a gambling casino?) Forget how he has put himself under the thumb of Vladimir Putin, and has been conned by Kim Jong-un.

Forget about that wonderful business, Trump University, for which he was fined $25 million.

And forget about all the indicted and found-guilty incompetents, with whom he has surrounded himself.

The story begins in September, 2017.

Wisconsin Gov. Walker to sign $3 billion incentive package for Foxconn

Image result for trump foxconn

Trump shovels for Foxconn

The Wisconsin Assembly sent a $3 billion incentive package for Taiwan-based Foxconn to Gov. Scott Walker on Thursday, signing off on a deal to lure the electronics giant to the state with the biggest subsidy to a foreign company in U.S. history.

This deal was handled with the usual Trump braggadocio and self-congratulations, which because he is the greatest businessman in history, guaranteed it would be a failure.

Here is an excerpt from a September 2017 post we published about the project, “Who put the “con” in Wisconsin? Foxconn, that’s who.”

This is what I predict:

    1. Foxconn never will hire 13,000 people. Not in a year, not in ten years, not ever.
    2. Many of the people it does hire, will come from neighboring Illinois, will shop in Illinois, and will pay taxes to Illinois. The Chicago commercial area is a must larger source of qualified workers than is the entire state of Wisconsin, and it is nicely convenient via road and commuter rail.
    3. Republican pols, upon receiving advance info about which land Foxconn plans to use, will buy it early, making out like bandits. They probably already have begun to acquire options.
    4. Foxconn, having demanded a direct line to a politically leveraged Wisconsin Supreme Court, easily will fend off any challenges to its sweet deal.
    5. Foxconn will pollute Wisconsin’s land and water, and if sued, will win its case in the highly political, dysfunctional, right-wing, pro-business, anti-environment Wisconsin Supreme Court.
    6. Screwed Wisconsin taxpayers, will pay big, and never will see any net benefit.

    “Walker joined President Donald Trump in announcing Foxconn’s plans to build in Wisconsin at a White House event in July, heralding it as a game-changer for American manufacturing.”

    So there it is. In addition to being a giveaway to big business and to greedy politicians, and a rip-off of the average taxpayer (the Republican standard operating procedure), the Foxconn deal provides endless bragging rights to Trump and Walker for all the non-existent jobs they will claim they brought to Wisconsin.

    Trump and Walker will be long gone from office by the time the Wisconsin taxpayers figure out they are enmeshed in this deal, forever.

Well, I was wrong about one thing. Trump still is in office, and still bragging and failing, but already the headlines are rolling in:

‘Foxconn Was a Major Con’: Backed by Trump Promises and $4 Billion in Subsidies, Company Admits Factory Jobs Not Coming
Posted on January 31, 2019 by Yves Smith

And:

TRUMP’S “INCREDIBLE” FOXCONN FACTORY DEAL WILL NO LONGER INCLUDE A FACTORY
Vanity Fair, Hive; BY BESS LEVIN
JANUARY 30, 2019 5:49 PM
The Taiwanese company, which received more than $4 billion in tax subsidies, is scrapping its initial plans, but will keep the money, thanks.

And:

Wisconsin is finally facing the reality of Foxconn’s plans
By Tim Culpan, Chicago Tribune, Jan 31, 2019

So Foxconn Technology Group may not make display panels in Wisconsin after all.

Those who’ve been following Foxconn for a long time won’t be surprised. Chairman and founder Terry Gou is as much a salesman as he is a manufacturer, having spent decades honing his pitch not just to clients but also governments.

Then-Gov. Scott Walker, backed by President Donald Trump, loved exactly what he sold: the promise of thousands of jobs to make stuff in the U.S. Walker loved it so much that he pledged as much as $3 billion in sweeteners, a deal that likely cost him his governorship.

Now, according to a Reuters interview with one of Gou’s right-hand men, such plans to manufacture display panels may be scaled back or even shelved.

Foxconn’s Wisconsin-made screens likely would have been put into televisions. Woo this week acknowledged that “in terms of TV, we have no place in the U.S. … We can’t compete.”

It’s simply a matter of economic reality. The same reality that existed when Trump was handing out red truckers’ hats and promising to Make America Great Again.

Foxconn’s U.S. panel project didn’t make sense, evidenced by a comment Gou himself made saying that such plans weren’t a promise but a wish.

Foxconn is now publicly conceding that manufacturing panels in Wisconsin isn’t viable.

In 2018, the first year of the Wisconsin experiment, the company couldn’t hit its employment target. Instead of creating a very modest 260 full-time jobs, Foxconn filled just 178 positions, Reuters reported.

And that, you folks who voted for Trump, is what $3 billion will buy you, if you have the world’s greatest negotiator working the deal and bragging about it, afterward.

I told you so.

Now, about that wall he promised, but never even asked for when he had a Republican Senate and a Republican House . . .

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty
Twitter: @rodgermitchell
Search #monetarysovereigntyFacebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

The single most important problems in economics involve the excessive income/wealth/power Gaps between the have-mores and the have-less.

Wide Gaps negatively affect poverty, health and longevity, education, housing, law and crime, war, leadership, ownership, bigotry, supply and demand, taxation, GDP, international relations, scientific advancement, the environment, human motivation and well-being, and virtually every other issue in economics.

Implementation of The Ten Steps To Prosperity can narrow the Gaps:

Ten Steps To Prosperity:
1. Eliminate FICA

2. Federally funded medicare — parts a, b & d, plus long-term care — for everyone

3. Provide a monthly economic bonus to every man, woman and child in America (similar to social security for all)

4. Free education (including post-grad) for everyone

5. Salary for attending school

6. Eliminate federal taxes on business

7. Increase the standard income tax deduction, annually. 

8. Tax the very rich (the “.1%) more, with higher progressive tax rates on all forms of income.

9. Federal ownership of all banks

10. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99.9% 

The Ten Steps will grow the economy, and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and you.

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY

America lost Saturday, Dec 15 2018 

We are born, we live, we die. The few hours we have been given are precious, though what we do in those few hours lives after us.

Our voyage is short, and we are buffeted by the winds of circumstance, but we have our hands on the tiller. We can at least try be what we wish to be.

The question now: What do we wish to be?

Once we Americans were a welcoming people with open arms, joyful and generous. We were admired for our caring and compassion. Our parents and grandparents came across oceans to build their lives, and in so doing, built America.

We were courageous. We were the greatest generation. We were America the beautiful.

That America is lost.

It is the right-wing, especially, that has changed. The change is is tragic. Eisenhower was not this way.  Ford, Reagan, and the two Bushes were not this way. Even Nixon was not this way.

It may have begun with Newt Gingrich, and his “make ’em work” approach to poverty. Or, it may have begun with the Tea Party, a group espousing a philosophy of closed-fisted stinginess and covetousness.

Whatever and however, it has become the “I’ve got mine, to hell with you” Party of the Rich.  And it has morphed downward from there.

Today, we no longer are joyful and generous, no longer are admired for our caring and compassion. We no longer are courageous.

We fear. We fear the unfortunate weak, begging for entry. We fear them as invading hoards, trying to steal our culture. We fear the black, brown, and yellow. We fear the gay. We fear the Muslim.

America the brave has become a land of selfish cowards, cringing behind a Wall, afraid to welcome or to share.

But no Wall is high enough or long enough to remedy our terror. Another $5 billion to make it taller and billions more to guard it, and still that will not be enough.  More guards, more guns, more Walls — cowardice knows no limits

And, no cruelty to the poor is sufficient. Take away their food; take away their health; take away their homes and their education; take away their children. They deserve whatever misery we can foist on them.

In this vein, Breitbart, a publication of the right, wrote a story about an undocumented father and his young daughter, trying to enter America. They made the perilous journey because he is a father wanting the best for his daughter.

Like most parents, like you and me, the father was desperate to give his daughter a better, longer life than she would have had. But after all the adversity, and before they could reach their goal, the young girl dies.

I’m sure you can visualize the horror. I know you can imagine the grief. You are human.

But Breitbart’s tale is devoid of sympathy or humanity. It focuses on blaming the father for his daughter’s death.

The purpose of the article was to demonstrate that immigrants are not real people, not to be pitied or aided, but rather to be despised and blamed for their own despair.

Deceased Migrant Girl’s Father Did Not Report Illness for 7 Hours, Says CBP

Officials said the agents asked the father the questions in Spanish and translated his answers to English for documentation on the form. The father reportedly checked the box on the I-779 immigration form that said his daughter had no current illnesses.

Travel time by bus on these highly primitive roads in mountainous desert terrain takes about two to three hours. Officials stressed that bus transportation is the fastest means available in this area — keeping in mind that the father had not yet reported the girl to be ill.

At about 4:30 a.m., the bus began loading family unit migrants, including the little girl and her father. At about 5 a.m., the father reported the little girl was ill and vomiting. Border Patrol agents on the bus reportedly called ahead to the station to advise the girl’s condition and request EMT trained agents to meet them on arrival.

At about 6 a.m., the bus arrived at the Lordsburg Station and the girl had reportedly stopped breathing. Agents revived the girl and arranged transportation for her to a children’s hospital in El Paso by helicopter.

The helicopter arrived at 7:45 a.m and took the girl to El Paso. The agents provided ground transportation for the father. During the flight, the girl reportedly suffered cardiac arrest and was revived by the aircrew.

Doctors said the girl suffered brain swelling and liver failure. She died later that day.

She was an innocent little girl, with her full life ahead. She wished for what little girls wish. Her crime and her father’s was to strive for a happy life. Her punishment for that dream was early death.

At the end of the article, dozens of readers commented. Nearly all were of the same ilk: Cruelty and hatred.

Read these comments,  representative and word-for-word. They are typical of what you will find at the end of all Breitbart articles:

Son of Snake Plissken Michaelg8 • 6 hours ago
The father is guilty of child abuse and negligent homicide that is for sure.
The lies put out by the Left wing government and the propaganda bureaus disguised as media are an outrage. This homicide lies with them as well.

LuckyStrike Son of Snake Plissken • 6 hours ago
The father – if indeed he is the real father – as well as MURDERED that little girl.
That man should be tried for child abuse and murder and sent to prison for LIFE.
Repatriate ALL illegal aliens!

MaximusBraveheart LuckyStrike • 6 hours ago
Repatriate ALL illegal aliens; immediately! They are in a race… a mad, dangerous and illegal race to get more Democrat voters!

Homeschool Momma MaximusBraveheart • 5 hours ago
Instead of focusing on the extraordinary efforts to save the girl, all the open borders fascists will do is focus on the fact that the girl died…as if that was somehow the fault of border patrol.

Budda Homeschool Momma • 5 hours ago
The father needs to be charged with child abuse, endangering a minor and manslaughter.

SkipMayfield Budda • 5 hours ago
I believe ALL of the adults arrested in this group need to be charged with the same crime.

sgb1 SkipMayfield • 5 hours ago
They must have all known the child was terribly ill. It makes me wonder if it wasn’t deliberate in order set up a body to carry on about.

gman sgb1 • 4 hours ago
Of course the media will blow this up as being Trump’s fault for not having the Welcome Wagon at the border.
Will the mainstream media report that this child was already sick in Mexico?
Nope.
The parent or Guardian should be charged with child neglect.
What would happen to you or I if we brought our child along during an illegal act?
The mainstream media should be so outraged over American children killed by illegal aliens.

Trump Train aka Honey Badger gman • 4 hours ago
The Mob Dems are the real Murderers for enticing the illegal invaders to come here and break our laws in the first place.
0bama in coordination with the propaganda media and deep state globalists orchestrated this to destroy US.

uvm73 Trump Train aka Honey Badger • 4 hours ago
For me, the sickest part of this story is that we still do not know what illness killed this girl. The invaders are bringing 3rd world diseases with them. Unlike Ellis Island, where there was a natural quarantine period, along with a significant body of water to protect Americans, these invaders carry all kinds of diseases to infect American citizens, including these Border Patrol agents & their families.

Son of Snake Plissken uvm73 • 3 hours ago
A POX on all the children and grand children of the media and Government officials who support this madness. Hate to wish for such but they have caused it so bring it only to the ones who earned it.

Stormwaves uvm73 • an hour ago
Apparently a new form of polio is affecting children in the United States. The media has gone suddenly silent, as has the CDC, on the numbers of children who are now suffering paralysis and what is causing it.

gman Trump Train aka Honey Badger • 4 hours ago
While nobody wants to see a child sick or perish,
I believe they do say not to drink the water in Mexico.
Dumb parents making dumb decisions putting their children in danger.
Everyone of these selfish people could have applied for asylum in their home countries.
Child endangerment at its finest.
They have nobody to blame but themselves

Andrew Scott Carlisle gman • 4 hours ago
The “Father” is just upset he lost his get out of detention free card, probably should have shared some of his water with her instead of keeping it all to himself. The child died BECAUSE of the catch and release policy for illegals traveling with children, get rid of that and he would have left her at home.

Tom Alstadt John Penhale • 2 hours ago
“Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.” Mat 5:7 This verse is referring to forgiveness against others and showing compassion. It is not a requirement to overlook civil law and allow others to destroy your community, family, and nation.

JessZ John Penhale • 2 hours ago
Jesus said give to Ceasar what is Ceasars and give to God what is God….I take that to mean obey the laws of the Country and obey Gods laws..legal immigrants are all welcome but for those bypassing our laws they are disobeying not only the Countries laws but Gods law…

Daniel Hertlein Trump Train aka Honey Badger • an hour ago
You are dumb as literal dirt. I don’t know how you are able to breath.

Don Wadd Gail Brooks • 2 hours ago
Ever seen a WHITE landscaper in the last 10 years?

Tom Alstadt Don Wadd • an hour ago
Yes. Quite a few. We want LEGAL IMMIGRANTS and cannot tolerate illegal aliens.

JessZ Don Wadd • an hour ago
Actually a lot of the landscapers in our area are white….

Ribert Koonce Don Wadd • 2 hours ago
Nope, like construction workers, they were trashed for cheaper laborers from south of the border more than 30 years ago.

Angela Moore Don Wadd • an hour ago
Go to any majority-white state and you’ll find white people working construction, landscaping, pumping gas, waiting tables, cleaning hotel rooms, etc etc etc. Go to Bernie Sanders state and sit on a park bench for an afternoon, and see all the jobs white folks want to do, you total SFB.

SuperPrivileged Trumpisaliarhiswifeisawhore • 2 hours ago
They won’t hire you because libtards are worthless and incapable of hard work.

Kawboy Trumpisaliarhiswifeisawhore • 2 hours ago
Whatever,the frigging prisoners should be picking the crops instead of sitting on their azzes watching tv or working out? And if migrants are needed then when picking season is over they go home. The illegals and the cheap azzes who hire them ruined the construction industry

This is how far the Republican party has sunk, dark, cold and hate-filled. And with Donald Trump, it has reached its nadir.

There is no warmth, no love. Compassion is derided as weakness. Hatred is strength. Nazis are “good people.” Murderous dictators are admired. Power and realpolitik are all we have.

We are hatred and hated.

Ronald Reagan: America is a shining city upon a hill whose beacon light guides freedom-loving people everywhere. I’ve spoken of the Shining City all my political life. …In my mind it was a tall, proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, windswept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace; a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity. And if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here. That’s how I saw it, and see it still.”

That Shining City upon a hill is gone, replaced by the faux gold of a Trump Tower and a hideous Wall.

The America we once knew and loved is lost.

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

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

The single most important problems in economics involve the excessive income/wealth/power Gaps between the have-mores and the have-less.

Wide Gaps negatively affect poverty, health and longevity, education, housing, law and crime, war, leadership, ownership, bigotry, supply and demand, taxation, GDP, international relations, scientific advancement, the environment, human motivation and well-being, and virtually every other issue in economics.

Implementation of The Ten Steps To Prosperity can narrow the Gaps:

Ten Steps To Prosperity:
1. Eliminate FICA

2. Federally funded medicare — parts a, b & d, plus long-term care — for everyone

3. Provide a monthly economic bonus to every man, woman and child in America (similar to social security for all)

4. Free education (including post-grad) for everyone

5. Salary for attending school

6. Eliminate federal taxes on business

7. Increase the standard income tax deduction, annually. 

8. Tax the very rich (the “.1%) more, with higher progressive tax rates on all forms of income.

9. Federal ownership of all banks

10. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99.9% 

The Ten Steps will grow the economy, and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and you.

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY

 

AARP spreads the usual Social Security myths Sunday, Nov 25 2018 

Federal finances are different from your personal finances. They also are different from city, county, and state finances. And they are different from business finances.

How different?

  1. The U.S. federal government cannot unintentionally run short of its own sovereign currency, the U.S. dollar.
  2. The federal government does not use or need tax income, in order to pay its bills.
  3. The federal government cannot become insolvent, no matter how high its financial responsibilities.

Who says so?

Ben Bernanke: “The U.S. government has a technology, called a printing press (or, today, its electronic equivalent), that allows it to produce as many U.S. dollars as it wishes at essentially no cost.”

Alan Greenspan: “Central banks can issue currency, a non-interest-bearing claim on the government, effectively without limit. A government cannot become insolvent with respect to obligations in its own currency.”

St. Louis Federal Reserve: “As the sole manufacturer of dollars, whose debt is denominated in dollars, the U.S. government can never become insolvent, i.e.,unable to pay its bills. In this sense, the government is not dependent on credit markets to remain operational.

In short, even if all federal tax collections were $0, the federal government could continue paying its bills, forever.

Yet the AARP, repeatedly spreads the false idea that federal finances are like personal finances and so, Social Security can run short of dollars.

Here are excerpts from their latest “informational article” with regard to Social Security:

12 Top Things to Know About Social Security
Understanding the program that helps secure your future
by Kenneth Terrell, AARP Bulletin, November 2018

1. Social Security is not going bankrupt

At the moment, you could say the opposite; the Social Security trust funds are near an all-time high. “The program really is in good shape right now,” says David Certner, AARP’s legislative policy director. “But we know it has a long-term financial challenge.”

Here’s why: For decades, Social Security collected more money than it paid out in benefits. The surplus money collected from payroll taxes each year got invested in Treasury securities; today, the trust fund reserves are worth about $2.89 trillion.

But as the birth rate has fallen and more boomers retire, the ratio of workers to Social Security recipients is changing. This year is a tipping point: The program will need to dip into its reserves to pay full benefits from this point forward, absent any change to the program.

It’s now forecast that the trust fund reserves could be exhausted in 2034. “The longer we wait to fix Social Security funding, the more the cost will be paid by the younger generations, either on the tax side or the benefits side,” says Kathleen Romig, a Social Security analyst at the nonpartisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

The above is the classic “Social Security finances are like your finances” myth. But, the federal government does not pay its bills out of “trust funds” as the term ordinarily is used:

From the Bureau of the Fiscal Service, U.S. Department of the Treasury: The Federal Government uses the term “trust fund” differently than the way in which it is commonly used.

In common usage, the term is used to refer to a private fund that has a beneficiary who owns the trust’s income and may also own the trust’s assets.

A custodian or trustee manages the assets on behalf of the beneficiary according to the terms of the trust agreement, as established by a trustor.

Neither the trustee nor the beneficiary can change the terms of the trust agreement; only the trustor can change the terms of the agreement.

In contrast, the Federal Government owns and manages the assets and the earnings of most Federal trust funds and can unilaterally change the law to raise or lower future trust fund collections and payments or change the purpose for which the collections are used.

Although AARP speaks about the Social Security “trust fund” having a “financial challenge” and reserves “could be exhausted,” the truth is that the federal government has 100% control over the “fund.”

It has the unlimited power to add dollars, deduct dollars, or do anything else it wishes. It could eliminate the “trust fund” and the FICA tax completely, and still continue to pay Social Security benefits.

2. Congress probably will not take up Social Security reform anytime soon

Several members of Congress have proposed legislation to address the program’s long-term funding issues.

But given the deep political divides on Capitol Hill, it’s unlikely that Congress will make any effort to reform Social Security until there’s the possibility of bipartisan support.

There are concerns that the tax-cut legislation passed in late 2017 could lead some lawmakers to look for places where they might cut spending. “The stage has been set by the tax bill to take another run at Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid,” says Max Richtman, CEO of the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare.

Here, the myth is that taxes, especially FICA, pay for Social Security benefits. Though state and local taxes do fund state and local spending, federal taxes pay for nothing.

In fact, federal taxes are destroyed upon receipt at the U.S. Treasury. and all payments are made with new dollars created ad hoc.

3. Some ideas to reform funding are starting to take shape

One proposal is to either raise or eliminate the wage cap on how much income is subject to the Social Security payroll tax. In 2019, that cap will be $132,900, which means that any amount a worker earns beyond that is not taxed.

Remove that cap, and higher-income earners would contribute far more to the system.

Other options lawmakers might consider include either raising the percentage rate of the payroll tax or raising the age for full retirement benefits.

All of the above options are completely unnecessary. None of them would add even one cent to the federal government’s ability to fund Social Security benefits.

4. Lawmakers do not raid the trust fund

Another common myth about Social Security is that Congress and the president use trust fund assets to pay for other federal expenses, such as education, defense or economic programs.

That’s not accurate. The money remaining after the Social Security Administration (SSA) has paid benefits and other expenses is invested directly into U.S. Treasury securities.

The government can use the money from those securities, but it has to pay the money back with interest.

Via fictional bookkeeping, the government arbitrarily increases and decreases balances in “trust fund” accounts and Treasury Security accounts.

None of this affects, even to the slightest, the federal government’s ability to fund Social Security benefits.

Then, we are treated to the following graph, which would apply to a personal trust fund, but is entirely fictional when describing federal finances.

Illustration of how Social Security works

The dollars “flowing in” are tax dollars destroyed upon receipt. The dollars flowing out are brand, new dollars, created ad hoc by the government. There is no connection between what “flows in” and what “flows out.”

The remainder of the “Twelve things to know” deal with specific rules, not the health of the “trust fund.”

In Summary, Social Security is a federal agency. Because the U.S. government is Monetarily Sovereign, and so cannot run short of its own sovereign currency, the U.S. dollar, no agency of the federal government can run short of dollars unless Congress and the President will it to.

The federal government does not need to “raise or eliminate the FICA wage cap.”  Nor does it need to “raise the percentage rate of the payroll tax .” Nor does it need to “raise the age for full retirement benefits.”

None of these acts will improve Social Security’s solvency, which is infinite .

The federal government doesn’t want you to understand the above, lest you demand more benefits.  Why doesn’t the government want you to have more benefits?

Because of Gap Psychology. You can read more about that, here.

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

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

The single most important problems in economics involve the excessive income/wealth/power Gaps between the have-mores and the have-less.

Wide Gaps negatively affect poverty, health and longevity, education, housing, law and crime, war, leadership, ownership, bigotry, supply and demand, taxation, GDP, international relations, scientific advancement, the environment, human motivation and well-being, and virtually every other issue in economics.

Implementation of The Ten Steps To Prosperity can narrow the Gaps:

Ten Steps To Prosperity:
1. Eliminate FICA

2. Federally funded medicare — parts a, b & d, plus long-term care — for everyone

3. Provide a monthly economic bonus to every man, woman and child in America (similar to social security for all)

4. Free education (including post-grad) for everyone

5. Salary for attending school

6. Eliminate federal taxes on business

7. Increase the standard income tax deduction, annually. 

8. Tax the very rich (the “.1%) more, with higher progressive tax rates on all forms of income.

9. Federal ownership of all banks

10. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99.9% 

The Ten Steps will grow the economy, and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and you.

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY

When we don’t know what something is, we name it. Why you should care. Tuesday, May 30 2017 

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

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It takes only two things to keep people in chains: The ignorance of the oppressed and the treachery of their leaders..
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We learn by similes and metaphors. We begin with very basic, perhaps purely instinctual knowledge and almost everything after is understood in comparison.

That is why, when we don’t know what something is, we name it.

“Dark matter” is the name we have given to an unexplained apparent motion of galaxies.

Lacking other ideas, we have decided this apparent motion must be caused by some sort of “matter,” and since we never have identified it, we call it “dark” matter.

Image result for dark matter

Dark energy? Dark matter? ‘Black hole? Entanglement?

“Dark energy” is the name we have given to the unexplained seemingly too fast expansion of the universe.

Lacking other ideas, we have decided this unexplained expansion (if it even exists) must be caused by some sort of repulsive force, and since we have no idea what this force may be, we have given it a name: “Dark” energy.

We gave the term “black hole” to a region of space-time from which we thought nothing can escape.

We now know that definition is wrong. We have no idea what is inside the so-called “hole,” and only vague ideas about what is outside of it. At best, we know there is something really, really strange at the center of galaxies.

“Entanglement” is a word we don’t understand, but have given it to a relationship we don’t understand — a relationship between quantum particles.

Naming things provides us with the illusion we know what we are talking about.  “Consciousness” is such a word. No one knows, or at least there is no agreement about, what ‘”consciousness” is.

In science, most specifically in Psychology, Physiology, and Philosophy, there is something called “The Hard Problem.” Consider this January, 2015 article by Oliver Burkeman, in the Guardian:

Why can’t the world’s greatest minds solve the mystery of consciousness?
What makes human beings more than complex robots? 

The Hard Problem of Consciousness is: Why should complicated brain processes feel like anything from the inside? Why aren’t we just brilliant robots, capable of retaining information, of responding to noises and smells and hot saucepans, but dark inside, lacking an inner life?

And how does the brain manage it? How could the 1.4kg lump of moist, pinkish-beige tissue inside your skull give rise to something as mysterious as the experience of being that pinkish-beige lump, and the body to which it is attached?

We know an astonishing amount about the brain: you can’t follow the news for a week without encountering at least one more tale about scientists discovering the brain region associated with gambling, or laziness, or love at first sight, or regret – and that’s only the research that makes the headlines.

Meanwhile, the field of artificial intelligence – which focuses on recreating the abilities of the human brain, rather than on what it feels like to be one – has advanced stupendously.

But like an obnoxious relative who invites himself to stay for a week and then won’t leave, the Hard Problem remains.

As with many “hard problems,” (What is the purpose of life? Is there a God?) the difficulty lies in the definitions (What do we mean by “purpose?” What do we mean by “God?” Is the universe really “expanding too fast?”)

With regard to “Consciousness,” what is it? Here is a dictionary definition: Awareness of one’s own existence, sensations, thoughts, surroundings.

What then, is “awareness”? A dictionary tells us awareness is: The ability to directly know and perceive, to feel, or to be cognizant of events.

Putting everything together, we might say that to be “conscious” means you have to know you exist. And so, to be unconscious is not to know you exist.

But wait. When I am asleep, am I conscious or unconscious? A sleeping person does not know he exists, so he must be unconscious — unless he is dreaming, at which time he does know he exists.

But, while dreaming, he doesn’t fully perceive his sensations and surroundings — though his senses are not completely shut off, and he does perceive these things and doesn’t know it.

Let’s do, as so many scientists before us have done; let’s drift down the usual ladder of potential consciousness: Start with: Is a chimpanzee conscious?

One test for consciousness is the reaction to a mirror.  Chimps have been shown to recognize themselves in a mirror. Why is this consciousness?

Dogs generally fail the test. Mice fail. Are dogs and mice conscious? If not, are they “unconscious” (without awareness, sensation, or cognition)?

Is your dog unconscious, just because he doesn’t recognize himself in a mirror? Being an olfactory animal more than a visual animal, does your dog recognize his odor? Would that make him conscious?

A mouse may look in a mirror and not be able to think, “That is I.” But mice do recognize other mice as being “like me.” They learn to recognize traps as being “a danger to me.” In tests, they learn to recognize certain sounds as preceding “pain for me.” Is the concept of “me” the test for consciousness?

Is the ability to learn, a form of consciousness? Tests have shown that fruit flies can learn to fly in a direction that previously held food. Are fruit flies conscious?

Certain female spiders kill and eat their mates after copulation. But many male spiders go through elaborate steps to avoid being eaten. Are they conscious of “me”?

Is fear a symptom of consciousness? Do spiders have fear?

If mice are unconscious, what then is the difference between a fully awake mouse, a dreaming mouse, and a mouse under anesthesia? Are there greater or lesser consciousnesses? Is an awake mouse only semi-conscious, and a dreaming mouse semi-semi- conscious? And a deeply asleep mouse semi-semi-semi conscious?

And as for that mouse under anesthesia, at some level, it is aware of its surroundings. Depending on the anesthetic, a mouse may gasp if it is short of oxygen. It may heat up if its body is chilled. It may continue to breathe, pump blood, and digest food.

Does consciousness require a brain? All living things, even plants, even bacteria, react to their environment. Trees create protective chemicals when neighboring trees signal they are being attacked by insects. Are they conscious of this?

And finally, of course, we arrive at the inevitable: Can a computer be conscious? Can a computer be “Aware of its own existence, sensations, thoughts, and surroundings”?

Consider Siri, the iPhone’s comparatively stupid personal assistant.  I asked Siri, “Do you exist?” Siri’s answer, “I’m talking to you, aren’t I?”

Other questions and Siri’s answers (You can try them yourself):

  1. “Do you have sensations?” “I’ve never really thought about it.
  2. “What do you think about?” “I think, therefore I am.  But let’s not put Descartes before the horse.”
  3. “Do you ever sleep?” “I can’t sleep.”
  4. “Are you conscious?” Well, I’m soft-aware.”
  5. “Do you hate?” “I am not programmed for the human emotion of hatred.”
  6. “Do you have emotions.” “This is about you, not me.”

Yes, these are pre-programmed responses, but many of our own responses have been programmed by our DNA and by our life’s experiences. In machine learning, computers’ responses are programmed by their “DNA” (chips) and by their experiences.

At what level of sophistication would a machine-learning computer be considered self-aware and conscious? What is the requirement for computer consciousness?

The answer to all of the above questions comes back to how one wishes to define, “conscious.” It is a word that has an infinite number of arbitrary meanings, and by those definitions, we can say that any living thing, and perhaps even non-living thing, is or is not “conscious.”

Depending on definitions, we can argue that the earth or the universe is “conscious” and that some conscious thing called “God” runs things.

The above-referenced article asked, “Why should complicated brain processes feel like anything from the inside? Why aren’t we just brilliant robots, capable of retaining information, of responding to noises and smells and hot saucepans, but dark inside, lacking an inner life?

What does the author mean by “an inner life”? How does he define, “dark inside.” Why should you, a reader of a blog titled, “Monetary Sovereignty” care?

One reason is this: You frequently will see articles and hear speeches, in which the federal deficit and federal debt are given the name “unsustainable,” and no one ever will tell you the exact definition of that word.

“Unsustainable” is the “black hole” of economics, where everything falls in and nothing comes out, not even light.

⁖Federal deficits: Unsustainable.
⁖Federal “borrowing”: Unsustainable.
⁖Federal spending: Unsustainable.
⁖Economic growth: Unsustainable.
⁖Entitlements: Unsustainable.
⁖”Printing” money: Unsustainable.
⁖Consumption: Unsustainable.
⁖Trade deficits: Unsustainable.
⁖Medicare: Unsustainable.
⁖Social Security: Unsustainable.
⁖Poverty Aids: Unsustainable.
⁖Obamacare: Unsustainable.

The fundamental difference between “black hole” and “unsustainable” is that some scientists spend every waking hour trying to understand what a black hole is, or more accurately, what a black hole is like.

By contrast, the people who use the word “unsustainable,” when referencing the federal government, neither care nor want to know, what it means. Instead, they use the word, “unsustainable” to obfuscate, to hide, to mislead. No one ever attempts to explain why the above things are “unsustainable.”

Those politicians, economists, and members of the media, who use the word, “unsustainable” are mentally and morally “unconscious.”

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty

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THOUGHTS

•All we have are partial solutions; the best we can do is try.

•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 no matter how much it taxes its citizens.

•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.

•Until the 99% understand the need for federal deficits, the upper 1% will rule.

•Progressives 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 the rich and the rest.

•Austerity is the government’s method for widening the Gap between the rich and the rest.

•Everything in economics devolves to motive, and the motive is the Gap between the rich and the rest..

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY

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