An Answer to Obama and the Corporate Oligarchy

102 posts / 0 new
Last post
George Victor

And of course, this decision by the administration is going to give the nutbar GOP and their ignorant following lots to complain about...not that the "progressive" community would ever themselves recognize the significance of this act in Andrew Bacevich's America.

 

 

NY Times, January 6, 2011

Pentagon Seeks Biggest Military Cuts Since Before 9/11

 

By THOM SHANKER and CHRISTOPHER DREW

 

WASHINGTON - Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said Thursday that the nation's "extreme fiscal duress" now required him to call for cuts in the size of the Army and Marine Corps, reversing the significant growth in military spending that followed the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

The White House has told the Pentagon to squeeze that growth over the next five years, Mr. Gates said, reducing by $78 billion the amount available for the Pentagon, not counting the costs of its combat operations.

The decision to go after the Pentagon budget, even while troops remain locked in combat overseas, is the clearest indication yet that President Obama will be cutting spending broadly across the government as he seeks to reduce the deficit - and stave off attacks from Republicans in Congress who want to shrink the government even more.

Republicans have for the most part resisted including military spending as they search for quick reductions in federal spending.

To make ends meet, Mr. Gates also announced that he would seek to recoup billions of dollars by increasing fees paid by retired veterans under 65 for Defense Department health insurance, even though Congress has rejected such proposals in the past. And he outlined extensive cuts in new weapons.

Cutting up to 47,000 troops from the Army and Marine Corps forces - roughly 6 percent - would be made easier by the withdrawal under way from Iraq, and the reductions would not begin until 2015, just as Afghan forces are to take over the security mission there. But Mr. Gates said the cuts in Pentagon spending were hardly a peace dividend, and were forced by a global economic recession and domestic pressures to find ways to throttle back federal spending.

"This department simply cannot risk continuing down the same path where our investment priorities, bureaucratic habits and lax attitudes toward costs are increasingly divorced from the real threats of today, the growing perils of tomorrow and the nation's grim financial outlook," Mr. Gates said at an afternoon news conference.

ElizaQ ElizaQ's picture

Oh dear.  Now they've done it.   Wingnut freak-out time.  Well not like they haven't been already but now they're really going after one of the most sacred of cows.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

"Land of the nutbar"  LaughingLaughingLaughingLaughing

contrarianna

From the Cato Institute:

Quote:
Gates’s Cuts that Aren’t

Posted by Christopher Preble
....
2) The Pentagon’s base budget, excluding the costs of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, is expected to grow in 2012. The FY 2011 base budget calls for spending $549 billion; the Obama administration is expected to request $554 billion for the Pentagon in its FY 2012 budget, which will be released next month. In real, inflation-adjusted dollars, that is a 42 percent increase over the base budget in 2001. When the costs of the wars are factored in, total Pentagon spending has grown 72 percent — again, in real terms — since 2001....

http://www.cato-at-liberty.org/gatess-cuts-that-arent/

In the same spirit of ObamOptics:

Quote:
Obama Signs Law Blocking Gitmo Closure
Expresses 'Strong Objection' Then Signs It Anyhow

by Jason Ditz, January 07, 2011
Email This | Print This | Share This | Antiwar Forum

In the latest example of President Obama having his cake and eating it too on the detention center at Guantanamo Bay, he has angrily expressed his “strong objection” to a Congressional measure that would block his promised closure of the facility. Then, he signed it....

http://news.antiwar.com/2011/01/07/obama-signs-law-blocking-gitmo-closure/

pogge

George Victor wrote:

And of course, this decision by the administration ...

You and I had this conversation last year when they pulled the same stunt. They play up the cuts to specific programs to create the impression that they're cutting the defence budget when in fact [url=http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2011/01/06/106312/gates-budget-plan-would-shr... defence spending is increasing[/url] (my emphasis added).

Quote:
The proposal still foresees military spending growing by three percent next year, to $553 billion, not including spending on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

...

The budget Gates outlined would mark the 14th year in a row that Pentagon spending has increased. Pentagon spending has more than doubled in 10 years and is projected to rise to $620.2 billion by 2015...

George Victor

The Cato Institute

8 Jan 2011 ... Promoting public policy based on individual liberty, limited government, free markets, and peaceful international relations.

 

Specializing in playing folks like a fiddle.   Now there's people who understand political wedges, eh?  Mike and now Steve sit at their feet.

contrarianna

No dispute with the Cato figures, then?

Here's some more:

Quote:
Pentagon to Seek $120 Billion in War Funding in 2012
Request Will Be More than Double Previous Administration Projections
by Jason Ditz, January 07, 2011
....

The figure will be slightly less than the $159 billion war funding request for 2011, but as the overall military budget for 2012 will be considerably larger than the record 2011 budget, it is really only a question of officials having shuffled certain funding into different categories....

http://news.antiwar.com/2011/01/07/pentagon-to-seek-120-billion-in-war-f...
=====
The pity is there is truth to the claim that the more extreme establishment right will use anything Obama does as the jumping off point to an even more right-wing government, claiming, falsely, that: "the pendulum has swung left, the liberals have had their way, and now it's our turn".

To my discredit, I cautiously supported Obama over McCain, thinking there was some reasonable chance Obama would reverse a little of the Bush government's lurch toward the police/military state, and economic insanity.
At first, riding on great popularity and economic fallout, he had a real opportunity to make some modest but real reforms in banking and financial operations but instead, he chose the same people who caused the financial scam/crises for his advisers.
It never got better after that--minor positive movements, a few holding patterns but mostly a continuation and extension of the worst of the Bush government.
But, worse still, Obama's administration passes in the public mind and mainstream media as a "liberal" government which "slashes" (the Globe & Mail's word) military spending, etc.

Because the Obama administration is falsely passed off as "progressive" by both the Democrat establishment, and by their Republican enemies to further right, actual progressive sentiment is silenced as "the  fringe" by both camps. The Democrats who criticized the Bush admin are for the most part silent or apologists when Obama does the same thing.

The pendulum, which negligibly slowed in its rightward passage under this now lame duck president, is now poised to fly much faster in the same direction when the faces are changed in the next election.

George Victor

This reader sees the Democratic party as the Tweedledee to the the GOPs Treedledum, but if you can be suckered by the Cato Institute, you'll never understand why it would still have been better had Al Gore taken Florida and not Dubya. People without medical care wiill soon be reminded of that.

Count yourself vulnerable.

contrarianna

George Victor wrote:

This reader sees the Democratic party as the Tweedledee to the the GOPs Treedledum, but if you can be suckered by the Cato Institute....

Count yourself vulnerable.

Count yourself incoherent.

Unable to refute the government numbers, which appear elsewhere than Cato, you resort to insult.
The bigger "suckers" I'd say are those who think Obama is something other than "tweedldum" after years of evidence.

Fidel

Noah_Scape wrote:
Every Republican President since WWII has overseen a huge INCREASE in government spending.

I think political conservatives  both sides of the border love big government bureaucracies and more government in general, and especially when it comes to duplicating government and all things military and policing, excessive legal and prison systems to protect private property rights of the few etc.

And Oabamacare is something positive and step in the "right" direction from a utilitarian point of view. A lot of the Liberal Democrat plan for health care is cutting back on "waste" and excesses. No doubt there is waste and excess and even fraud worth billions of dollars a year for US taxpayers. Obama has said he intends to make "tough choices." This leaves little to the imagination, and that health care services for the very old(like his grandma), the incurable, and the poor will likely be on the short end of the stick. Meanwhile the hundreds of billions of dollars on military spending are considered sacred in every fascist setup. This utilitarian view of health care is not so far removed from the Nazi philosophy of efficiency and cost-savings in the name of the "public good." The most privatized health care system in the world has been pre-determining which American lives are not worth living for a long time. The killing centres mentality is there lurking in the shadows.

George Victor

contrarianna wrote:

George Victor wrote:

This reader sees the Democratic party as the Tweedledee to the the GOPs Treedledum, but if you can be suckered by the Cato Institute....

Count yourself vulnerable.

Count yourself incoherent.

Unable to refute the government numbers, which appear elsewhere than Cato, you resort to insult.
The bigger "suckers" I'd say are those who think Obama is something other than "tweedldum" after years of evidence.

The Cato Institute is saying what it does with a purpose.  They know damned well that Obama can do only so much...for an understanding of this, read Andrew Bacevich's Washington Rules. The institute is also now arguing from the newly legitimate Conservative position...balance the budget. You are being manipulated.

Do you ever find yourself quoting the Fraser Institute?

Get to understand the American political issues and why the Cato people are suddenly criticizing Obama on this one.

Again, I have no faith in Democrats being that much different from Republicans...but just enough (see their continued support from - and of - the union movement) to see them as the only hope for a liveable future. Try to put it in context of an economy in which the middle class have wakened to their danger, and the way in which they are being manipulated. Try to undetrstand why a great many good people in the U.S. have decided they CANNOT  just pick up their little red wagon and go home and sulk.

 

George Victor

My post about Bacevich, imported from the adjoining thread.. the globalization of militarism:

 

Andrew Bacevich makes clear in Washington Rules: America's Path to Permanent War, that the militarism of the U.S.today is a product of the Second World War and postwar period, developing a "tradition" of belief in "America's responsibility to lead" the world.

"Prior to World War II, Americans by and large viewed military power and institutions with skepticism, if not outright hostility. In the wake of World War II, that changed. An affinity for military might emerged as central to the American identity...A people who had long seen standing armies as a threat to liberty now came to believe that the preservation of liberty required them to lavish resources on the armed forces.During the Cold War, Americans worried ceaselessly about falling behind the Russians, even though the Pentagonconsistently maintained a position of overall primacy. Once the Societ threat disappeated, mere primacy no longer sufficed. With barely a whisper of national debate, unambiguous and perpetual global military supremacy emerged as an essential predicate to global leadership.

"Every great military power has its distinctive sigtnature. For Napoleonic France it was the levee en masse...For Great BRitain in the heyday of empire, it was command of the seas...Germany from the 1860s to the 1940s (And Israel from 1948 to 1973) took another approach, relying on a potent blend of tactical flexibility and operational audacity...

"The abiding signature of American military power since World War II "the sacred trinity: an abiding conviction that the minimum essentials of international peace and order require the United States to maintain a global military presence ,to to cinfigure its forces for global power projection, and to counter existing or anticipated threats by relying on a policy of global interventionism."

Together, credo and trinity "provide the basis for an enduring consensus that imparts a consistency to U.S. policy regardless of which political party may hold the upper hand or who may be occupying the White House. From the era of Harry Truman to the age of Barack Obama, (it)...defines the rules to which Washington adheres...the precepts by which Washington rules."

 

If you don't understand this historical perspective, there is no sense continuing a badk and forth.

 

al-Qa'bong

I'm pretty sure that everyone here understands this historical perspective.

George Victor

You are shooting from a hidey-hole again alQ.  Want to round out that snotty observation?

al-Qa'bong

What the?

I dunno George, you seemed to be trying to be civil there for a few days at the start of the new year.  I guess the effort was too much for you.  Carry on raising the level of discourse hereabouts.

kropotkin1951

All Hail the superior intelligence

George Victor

al-Qa'bong wrote:

I'm pretty sure that everyone here understands this historical perspective.

You're "pretty sure" aQ?    Even when people begin quoting the bloody Cato institute? Where, in that, is the assurance that people understand the meaning of the military for the American people and their political system/ Where, in the endless stream of NDPP's linkages with juvenile "progressive" web sites in there any indication of understanding?

I'll try one more end of work observation by Bacevich who does fault Obama, even while showing that Obama HAD TO adhere to "Washington rules," which is about the rules that have been established since the Second World War.

Bacevich: "By satisfying the immediate demands of their constituents, regardless of cost, politicians buy popular deference, win reelection, and insulate the Washington rules from serious examination. A half century ago, with the United States a credit nation, President Eisenhower understood that military expanditures exact social costs. Today, with the United States in hock up to its neck, politicians pretend that Americans can have guns and butter, thereby perpetrating fraud on a scale far greater than Mr. Madoff's. They have gotten away with this modern version of bread and circuses for the same reason that Madoff did: when you're selling something that seems toogood to be true, nothing works like having a greedy and gullible clientele.

"The bottom line is this: A minimalist conceptin of citizenship that relieves individual Americans of any obligation to contribute to the nation's defense allows Washington wide latitude in employing U.S. military power. Unnecessary and misguided wars are but one deleterious result. An insistence that, unlike other nations, the United States need not live within its means obviates any requirements to balance the books, with the country hurtling toward insolvency as a result.

"To put it another way,if Washington pursues ruinous military and fiscal policies, Americans have NO ONE BUT THEMSELVES TO BLAME. (my edited accent)  Were they to define national defense as a collective responsibility (as George Washington urged) and were they to demand that the state operate on a pay-as-you-go basis (as common sense requires), the Washington rules would almost immediately become untenable."

Bacevish says that in Obama's West Point speech of Dec. 1, 2009, explaining why he felt it "necessary to widen a war already in its ninth year, Obama justified his decisiion by appending it to a much larger narrative. 'More than any other nation,' he declared, 'the United States of America has underwritten global security for over six decades - a time that for all its problems, has seen walls come down, and markets open, and billiions lifted from poverty, unparalleled scientific programs and advancing frontiers of human liberty.'..  However, "the six decades to which the president referred in his artfully sanitized rendering of contemporary history were the years during which the American credo and the sacred trinity has ascended to a positiion of uncontested supremacy. Thus did the president who came into office vowing to change the way Washington works make known his intention to leave this crucially important element of his inheritance all but untouched. Like Johnson, the president whose bold agenda for domestic reform presaged his own, Obama too was choosing to conform.

"Still, we should be gradeful to him for making at least one thing unmistakably clear: To imagine that Washington will ever tolerate second thoughts about the Washington rules is to engage in willful self-deception. Washington itself has too much to lose.

"If change is to come, it must come from the people. Yet unless Americans finally awaken to the fact that THEY'VE BEEN HAD,(again, my edit.)  Washington will continue to have its way."

 

Bacevich omitted any detailing of  the forces of extreme reaction at work, the massive dependancy of the economy on military spending for jobs and growth, and one can only speculate on what he might choose to emphasize in describing American society today in detail.  He calls for Americans to assume the responsibility of citizenship that Eisenhower saw weakening,  but one wonders if the ignorance and hatred has not grown too ingrained for that.

George Victor

Just read something besides your own musings sometime, Kroppy.

kropotkin1951

George Victor wrote:

Just read something besides your own musings sometime, Kroppy.

 

 

George fuck off with the personal attacks. Who the fuck do you think you are?  You do not know me and you refuse to engage in any civl debate because if anyone disagrees with you they are personally attacked. Look above in this thread, how many people have you attacked in this thread?

I'll give you a hint. Posts numbered:  35  39  50  61 62  64  68  all contain nasty little insults against other posters. 

Why is it you are allowed to continue to stifle debate with your aggressive nasty back biting posts. 

al-Qa'bong

You have to admit, George is usually victorious when he tries to deflect the conversation away from a discussion about Obama.

George Victor

Obama is central to the last posting from Bacevich.  Bother to read, al.

George Victor

kropotkin1951 wrote:

All Hail the superior intelligence

Kroppy, why would you post something like this - just after I had spent a large chunk of time trying to define my position - and then not expect the kind of reply I gave?

In a continuing series of threads attacking Obama - without any attempt at explaining his position - I'm trying to bring another perspective to bear.  And then I'm attacked as being elitist...and "All Hail the superior intelligance is certainly personal. Am I missing something?

Slumberjack

kropotkin1951 wrote:
Why is it you are allowed to continue to stifle debate with your aggressive nasty back biting posts. 

And it can only get worse from here if we have to explain to George that we, the great unread, would do well to remain as such so long as the list of references and obscurities he frequently trots out serves as the source for his opinions.

George Victor

Jack, I can't imagine anything more stifling than your observations about something that you have not read.

And if anyone can explain how my references to - and quotations from - just-published works "stifle" debate...? 

Chaps, why not keep the little reactive turds following my postings to yourself, and all will be well. 

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

George, your quotations are great. The problem, as you know, is the bullying, insulting and snide remarks which accompany them. I'm back from vacation, refreshed and optimistic of what wonders 2011 holds. So rather then suspend you outright, I'm telling you, for the last time, the next time I see a post couched with a sarcastic rejoinder from you, I'll be giving you a three-day break.

Also, if you post things you claim will save other babblers from their ignorance (and use language insisting as much), expect your posts to be treated with the irony they deserve.

Now: back to the thread topic.

Fidel

Thanks for your post at #66, George. Ain't it the truth. And I think part of the problem is that other western nations have been compliant with the US dollar imperialism. We have all benefitted in many ways(not all of them good, in fact in many ways not very well at all) by the USA's willingness to go into debt and run trade imbalances with the rest of the world exporting their national products (as well as their national savings) to materialistic America where everything can be bought or at least put on tick with high interest rate credit cards and other lines of credit.

We are all complicit in propping-up the most unsustainble economies and way of life that there ever was. And this globalizing "new" liberal capitalism really took off after 1987-1991 or so when the Soviet economies collapsed and were basically pauperized by traitorous oligarchs and western economic think tanks that tried to colonize them by dollar or deutschmark or whatever. The one positive thing for those former Soviet countries is that they have maintained sovereignty over their currencies.

Obama is a just a cosmetic leader. We all understand that, George. The real question is whether western citizens are ready for a multipolar world with the US Military having to actually pay its own bills instead of living off the avails of other rich and poor countries alike? Is US dollar imperialism in decline, George? How much time is left on the clock for western world imperialism?

George Victor

Catchfire, I cannot believe that you have read the one-liners that follow my quotations from works that I'm reading. Could you pass along a warning to those folks?  Or am I to simply eat them?

I would very much appreciate simply being ignored, for my elitism and contrariness, and request nothing more than an opportunity to post perspectives that are  not insulting...to anyone. I would only request, in return, that the attack threads on Obama, a feature of this forum for many months now, be treated as an invitation to respond.

 

 

Fidel

George, have you ever stated that you support a specific political party while babbling? Because I think that could be a problem for you here but I'm not sure. We should try not to pigeonhole ourselves and appear non-partisan while, and at the same time, accept that a certain political party is not perfect and quite often.

al-Qa'bong

Quote:

I would very much appreciate simply being ignored, for my elitism and contrariness, and request nothing more than an opportunity to post perspectives that are  not insulting...to anyone.

So do that, without, as Catchfire said, insulting everyone else and suggesting that those who don't share your exalted views are unread cretins.

Fidel

I see the word 'unread' used a number of times in this thread by babblers, and George isn't one of them. Watchout, George. Apparently they've been busy building a big case against you. Next comes the gallows.

kropotkin1951

George Victor wrote:

Catchfire, I cannot believe that you have read the one-liners that follow my quotations from works that I'm reading. Could you pass along a warning to those folks?  Or am I to simply eat them?

I would very much appreciate simply being ignored, for my elitism and contrariness, and request nothing more than an opportunity to post perspectives that are  not insulting...to anyone. I would only request, in return, that the attack threads on Obama, a feature of this forum for many months now, be treated as an invitation to respond.

 

Believe it or not George many of us come here for other discussions not only ones centered on what you are reading.  I find most of your quotes to be apologies for imperialism.  In find you condescending and demeaning to any point of view that does not accept the latest "insight" you have read.  Oh and by the way I have two degrees one in law and one in political studies.  I also have a red seal carpentry ticket and I am extremely tired of you implying and stating that I am an idiot who reads nothing and has no life experience merely because I disagree with your subservient viewpoint on politics.

You are a bully and I am tired of you trying to hog the living room I share with many people not just you.

 

Fidel

No one in this thread has called anyone else an idiot by what I can tell.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

No more comments about George Victor or any other babbler in this thread. Back on topic, or I'm closing it.

Slumberjack

Fidel wrote:
George, have you ever stated that you support a specific political party while babbling? Because I think that could be a problem for you here but I'm not sure. 

This is pure unsubstantiated speculation on your part.  At any rate, over the years I have developed a distinct antipathy toward the sort of public style of intervention which is all too reminiscent of a trip to the vice-principal's office.

Fidel

I've been sent to the VP's office plenty and am proud of it thank you very much as gracias. And they need an answer to the Obama corporate oligarchy not the George and Fidel whatever rhymes with hokey.

Slumberjack

ok dokey.

Fidel

Okay, duck.

al-Qa'bong

Quote:

The problem is not that Obama hasn't advanced a vision of a qualitatively better society as a true progressive would or even that his reforms, though beneficial, enhance plutocratic power. It is that he has done almost nothing to restore the minimal decencies that preceded America's Reaganite turn. Is there any reason to think that he would if he could? Like Obama's enemies, his apologists think so; they continue to believe, in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, that Obama is a progressive at heart.

This is the thinking of victims of abuse who stand by their abuser no matter what; the thinking of those for whom the only defense is no offense at all. Organized labor is a case in point. Although they were promised little - basically just the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), a reform nearly as milquetoast as Obama's health care reforms -- no one has worked harder to elect Democrats. Yet, from Day One, Obama, continuing Bush's teach-for-tests-and-thinking-be-damned (mis)education reforms - rebranded, of course, and polished over -- took aim at teachers' unions. His next move was to license the Republican-Tea Party assault on what remains of the labor movement, and to legitimize their anti-deficit nostrums, by freezing the salaries of federal workers, even as he turned over billions to bankers and acquiesced in massive tax breaks for the rich. Now even "good Democrats" like Andrew Cuomo and Jerry Brown are following suit. Is there any question why, with "progressives" like these, Republicans, smelling blood, have taken aim at public employees and their unions? And yet labor is still there for Obama!

 

 

What Obama Apologists and Tea Partiers Have in Common -- Shared Delusions

Fidel

I really don't think we can blame Obama. US constitutional government is a very good idea, but it's not really designed for governments to deliver populist policies to the people. If Karl Marx or Jesus Christ were president today, neither would be able to whip many votes in Congress to affect the kind of change they would want to have happen. And Obama isn't even a real lefty, so few people should be surprised with the lack of results. Obama is merely a cosmetic leader of the executive branch of US Government, and everyone knows that it has very little power to govern independently of the other three shhh! two branches.

  And if I was hired to fix the USA - and wouldn't that be fun? - I would do this:

1. Keep the US Constitution and make a few changes, like making proportional elections a new law of the land. Hire Wilf Day et al to design an open list MMP system or whatever they decide as heads of a citizens assembly on electoral reform. Eliminate the very corrupt system for corporate lobbying of US government. 2. Create a carbon copy of the three branches of government to manage the economy, because the economy is that important. Fire everyone in the plunge protection team created in the 1980s. 3. Nationalise the Federal Reserve, and put an end to the revolving door access between Wall and Washington. Revive the Glass-Steagal and other legislations to separate interests in pillars of the finance, real estate, and insurance sectors. 4. Sign off on the National Security Act once and for all, and slash military spending for the sake of world peace and saving the real US economy from imploding.

5. Scrap the CIA. Scrap the NSA - it's supposed to be a federal agency for collecting intel on foreign militaries not the American people. Put a stop to all black budget prorgrams. Government secrecy and democracy are incompatible.

And this is just for starters.

kropotkin1951

Ike got it right.  Obama is merely the latest Harvard elite to take over the reigns of the empire.  Like the President before him he believes with his whole being that America has the moral right and responsibility to rule the world.  It is the American version of the white man's burden. It is the sickness at the heart of their system.

If you want to talk about intent of the constitutional framers their intent was to not have a standing army and to not engage in foreign wars. However if you look at every generation of Americans they have fought either bloody violent wars or engaged in ethnic cleansing.  That is America's history not this absurd exceptionalism mime. The idea that they are the shining light for the world to emulate is a lie and a rewriting of history right back to the fact that the Puritans. Who were in fact the British equivalent of the Taliban;  misogynist, violent and authoritarian.

Bec.De.Corbin Bec.De.Corbin's picture

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Ike got it right.  Obama is merely the latest Harvard elite to take over the reigns of the empire.  Like the President before him he believes with his whole being that America has the moral right and responsibility to rule the world.  It is the American version of the white man's burden. It is the sickness at the heart of their system.

"rule the fucking world"? No you got it wrong... again.

kropotkin1951 wrote:

 Either Americans are insane or their system is.

 

First we're insane now we're sick; all 311 million of us. WTF? 

Anyways enough of that: I'm a bit confused and surprised as to President Obama's choosing of former Commerce Secretary Bill Daley as his next chief of staff. The man is not impulsive; there must be a reason for this aside from some crazy corporate conspiracy. One thing you can say is Bill Daley has the Wall Street corporate connections and understands how the system works. Maybe that's what Obama feels he needs right now to work with them on improving the economy, who knows (I dam sure don't). And Obama is going to have to work with them, like it or not Wall Street is here to stay; I don't even think the zombie apocalypse can kill them off entirely... only time will tell if this is a good choice.  

I have to admit I am apprehensive about this.Frown

 

George Victor

BDC, I have to capitulate on this one.  Although, as the story says, the pres. is more popular than his party, it looks like he really is in his economic birthday suit.    I don't believe the problem is "insanity" or "sickness" on a national level...just dumbed-down, and frightened in the land of the free. We're fast approaching that condition in Canuckistan.

 

 

NYTimes, January 7, 2011

Obama the Centrist Irks a Liberal Lion

 

By MICHAEL POWELL

 

BERKELEY, Calif. - So how would he grade President Obama's economic policies, and the new team put in place this week?

Though Robert B. Reich, the former labor secretary, endorsed Mr. Obama and has traveled to the White House to provide economic counsel, he offers a smile that looks unmistakably pained.

"We have a remarkably anemic recovery; it's paper-thin," Mr. Reich says. "In the narrowest, tactical terms, in sheer dollars committed to programs, Obama's done pretty well, and his favorability ratings are better than those of the Democratic Party."

Then he sweeps his hands far apart in his sun-filled warren of an office at the University of California, Berkeley.

"If you widen the lens, the public is being sold a big lie - that our problems owe to unions and the size of government and not to fraud and deregulation and vast concentration of wealth. Obama's failure is that he won't challenge this Republican narrative, and give people a story that helps them connect the dots and understand where we're going."

Mr. Reich, 64, is one of several prominent liberal economists who despair of what they say is this president's political caution, and his unwillingness to duel with an emboldened Republican Party.

Faced with a Republican majority in the House, Mr. Obama this week appointed Gene Sperling, a former adviser to President Bill Clinton, as director of his National Economic Council, and William M. Daley, a centrist politician turned banking executive, as his chief of staff. Mr. Daley was a member of the Third Way, a group that counsels deficit reduction, more tax cuts and perhaps trimming Social Security.

Mr. Reich is not pleased by the president's message of late.

"By freezing federal salaries, by talking about deficits, by extending the Bush tax cuts, he's legitimizing a Republican narrative," Mr. Reich says.

"Why won't he tell the alternative story? For three decades we've cut taxes on the wealthy while real wages stood still."

Mr. Obama's liberal economics critics include Nobel Prize winners, Paul R. Krugman, the Princeton professor and columnist for The New York Times, and Joseph E. Stiglitz, the Columbia professor who served as chairman of Mr. Clinton's Council of Economic Advisors."

 

 

kropotkin1951

Bec.De.Corbin wrote:

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Ike got it right.  Obama is merely the latest Harvard elite to take over the reigns of the empire.  Like the President before him he believes with his whole being that America has the moral right and responsibility to rule the world.  It is the American version of the white man's burden. It is the sickness at the heart of their system.

"rule the fucking world"? No you got it wrong... again.

I know that it is hard for Americans to admit that their military is used to steal resources form people all over the planet.  The problem with america is imperialism.  Any analysis that includes America is fighting for democracy in the world is merely rhetoric designed to make the population of America guilt free.  Excuse me if I happen to believe that the American oligarchy controls the IMF and World bank and other institutions for the benefit of their own interests and uses their military to bomb the crap out of any country who believes sovereignty means they get to decide how their resources are developed and who they belong too. Next you will claim the troops in Afghanistan are there to protect women and children.

 

al-Qa'bong

US forced to import bullets from Israel as troops use 250,000 for every rebel [sic] killed

Forces using 1.8 billion rounds of ammunition a year

Quote:

US forces have fired so many bullets in Iraq and Afghanistan - an estimated 250,000 for every insurgent killed - that American ammunition-makers cannot keep up with demand.

A government report says that US forces are now using 1.8 billion rounds of small-arms ammunition a year. The total has more than doubled in five years, largely as a result of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as changes in military doctrine.

What was that international award Obama won not long ago?  Some Swedish thing...

Bec.De.Corbin Bec.De.Corbin's picture

kropotkin1951 wrote:

 Next you will claim the troops in Afghanistan are there to protect women and children.

 

 

Shows what you know about me... our troops are there to ensure the next government in Afghanistan doesn't host training camps or safe havens for international Islamist groups who take advantage of the Afghan tribal customs' of hospitality and cause shit like 9-11 or what happened in India. That's all I care about in Afghanistan: let the women and children live under the heel of the Taliban. As for the rest of your stuff that's your opinion, so be it...

As for the thread subject I've said my piece for now... time will tell. I hope it's positive.

Could you imagine the stress of being the president of the United States right now? I wouldn't want the job, would you?

 

 

George Victor

Your humanity is a pure American variety, BDC, wide open to suasion.  Unfortunately my relatives among those 311,000,000,  two cousins and a sister-in-law, won't go that far with me in political discussion.  Wink  But, rest assured, I'm  countin' on you few to hold back the horde. Far saner than some Canucks I've known.

wage zombie

Bec.De.Corbin wrote:

Shows what you know about me... our troops are there to ensure the next government in Afghanistan doesn't host training camps or safe havens for international Islamist groups who take advantage of the Afghan tribal customs' of hospitality and cause shit like 9-11 or what happened in India. That's all I care about in Afghanistan: let the women and children live under the heel of the Taliban. As for the rest of your stuff that's your opinion, so be it...

That seems like a pretty naive perspective to me.

al-Qa'bong

If you followed through with your argument, bec, you'd have invaded Saudi Arabia, instead of being its strongest ally.

kropotkin1951

The best war related acronym.  Operation Iraqi Liberation  Its about the oil, oil, oil. 

Bec They could have had that immediately since the Taliban government was willing to talk about handing over Bin Laden  As usual the Yankees first response was send in the Marines and let God sort out the dead.  Violence begets violence and for every drone that targets an innocent Pakistani or Afghan two or three of their relatives start to hate america and what it stands for.  

In my world I don't believe only american lives have value and other people deserve to live in fear of being bombed by the evil empire because some Saudis set up camp in their back country. Talk about punishment for crimes a people didn't commit.

George Victor

But you're right, BDC. One guy - even the #1 guy - isn't able to turn it all around.  There would have to be a helluva lot of introspection, first, about where it's all going, what's in store for the junior set, etc.   And I don't believe the United States of America (or Canada for that matter) has the nerve to do that kind of self-analysis. We're all afraid.

Pages

Topic locked