Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Long Live Socialism!

Title of the post grabbed you, didn't it? As did the title of this piece by Jack Lessenberry at "The Smirking Chimp." I'm still in the frame of mind I was yesterday. Disgusted with the nonsense, the tripe, dispensed by Fox News 24-hours a day, every day. And it is the most popular news on TV, by far. I tell you again. We are a doomed people.

Lessenberry makes all the points I've scattered all over the place here at "Powderfinger" over the years. So I thought I would just put all these points in one post. For convenience. Doesn't mean I won't be making them again. I can almost promise I will. But at least here you will have everything conveniently summarized.

  • The rich rail against socialism, but in fact they are in favor of it . . . for the rich.
  • And they approve other aspects of socialism such as police protection, roads, agencies protecting food, for example.
  • Libertarianism which favors virtually no government, except maybe for defense, is "a great philosophy for teenage boys."
  • National debt now is not as large as "right-wing howlers in Congress" would have us believe. But is cause for concern. Only $1 trillion when Reagan took office.
  • Deficit is $14 trillion and growing by $1 trillion a year. Yes, Obama added $2 trillion in "narrowly successful" effort to stave off a second Great Depression.
  • Big lies the Republicans proclaim about the cause of the deficits:
    • "entitlements" too high; can't afford health care, and maybe not even Social Security
    • wages and benefits of public employees
  • Raising taxes, especially on the rich, is no solution to lowering the deficit.
  • This is "bullshit and blatant hypocrisy"
  • But remarkable they have convinced "an astonishing number of us to believe this."
  • Myth that we can all be rich "another howler we've been sold."
  • Mess we're in is in large part because of huge redistribution of wealth in the country, starting with Reagan. 
  • We have been transferring wealth from poor to rich, especially the richest one-tenth of one percent of the population.
  •  Budget surplus at the close of Clinton presidency and were beginning to reduce national debt.
  • George W. Bush ended surplus, had Congress enact massive tax cuts, "vast majority of which went to the rich."
  • None of this in dispute.
  • Defense of tax cuts that rich use tax cuts to produce jobs and they spend money to stimulate the economy is "nonsense." Top earners who get the tax cuts don't spend as much of their income as the lower earners. They sock it away.
  • Back in the '50s and '60s, the rich paid as much as 90 percent on incomes above a certain level, and they "still got richer."
  • "We can fix this if we have the guts, or we can go on becoming a society with a very few rich and a whole lot of poor." 
Karl Marx said that was bound to happen someday. And guess what he said was bound to happen next?
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