Revolutionary overhaul of American politics
Taxing the superrich 1% is a given. Lasn and White's counterattack also offers specific demands for game-changing reforms that would rival anything America saw back in the Great Depression years:
"(A) 'Robin Hood' tax on all financial transactions and currency trades; a ban on high-frequency 'flash' trading; the reinstatement of the Glass-Steagall Act to again separate investment banking from commercial banking; a constitutional amendment to revoke corporate personhood and overrule Citizens United; a move toward a 'true cost' market regime in which the price of every product reflects the ecological cost of its production, distribution and use;" and they are in favor of "perhaps even the birth of a new, left-right hybrid political party that moves America beyond the Coke vs. Pepsi choices of the past."
There are already several proposed amendments, like Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders' 28th Amendment overturning the Citizens United decision. That's tough. But taxes on Wall Street trading? Remember that in one month a couple of years ago, traders at Goldman Sachs Group (GS, news) made more than $100 million in net profits each day for 23 days. They'll spend billions to fight any such tax reform.
My prediction: Wall Street will never change -- never -- until it suffers another catastrophic meltdown, with no bailouts this time. We haven't completed the natural economic cycle then-Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson's team aborted in 2008. Only then can we restore Glass-Steagall and reverse that totally irrational Citizens United ruling that corporations -- whose sole allegiance is merely to their stockholders, not to all Americans -- have the same rights as living humans. That ruling's not only bad law, it is bad logic, bad morals, bad economics, and ultimately, it's bad for capitalism.
Enraged youth drive the movement
Listen to Lasn and White describing the energy driving OWS movement. It comes from deep within the collective soul of a new generation of young Americans who have been disenfranchised by clueless politicians who are trapped deep inside a corrupt two-party political system no longer capable of changing. And our youth are enraged. Listen:
"This primal cry for democracy sprang from young people who could no longer ignore the angst in their gut -- the premonition that their future does not compute, that their entire lives will be lived in the apocalyptic shadow of climate-change tipping points, species die-offs, a deadening commercialized culture, a political system perverted by money, precarious employment, a struggle to pay off crippling student loans, and no chance of ever owning a home or living in comfort like their parents. Glimpsing this black hole of ecological, political, financial and spiritual crisis, the youth and the millions of Americans who joined them instinctively knew that unless they stood up and fought nonviolently for a different kind of future, they would have no future at all."
Yes, America's youth are the voice of the 99%, Americans inspired by the Arab Spring revolutions. American youth are fueling "the greatest social-justice movement to emerge in the United States since the civil rights era."
But never lose sight of the real war here. Yes, there's a war between the richest 1% of Americans who have seen their income grow 265% the past generation while the incomes of the other 99% have stagnated or fallen. Yes, the wealth gap is bigger now than it was in 1929 just before the market crashed.
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To add to my previous posts, I submit the following copy/paste from another thread (I take no credit for this, it was someone else who researched and posted it, but I think it says a lot):
Princeton political scientist Larry Bartels studied the voting behavior of US senators in the early '90s and discovered that they respond far more to the desires of high-income groups than to anyone else. By itself, that's not a surprise. He also found that Republicans don't respond at all to the desires of voters with modest incomes. Maybe that's not a surprise, either. But this should be: Bartels found that Democratic senators don't respond to the desires of these voters, either. At all!
It doesn't take a multivariate correlation to conclude that these two things are tightly related: If politicians care almost exclusively about the concerns of the rich, it makes sense that over the past decades they've enacted policies that have ended up benefiting the rich. And if you're not rich yourself, this is a problem. First and foremost, it's an economic problem because it's siphoned vast sums of money from the pockets of most Americans into those of the ultrawealthy. At the same time, relentless concentration of wealth and power among the rich is deeply corrosive in a democracy, and this makes it a profoundly political problem as well.
Bottom line, it's not one party, or the other, at fault, it's both, so quit the finger pointing and bickering at each other. I am neither DEM nor GOPer (used to be, they lost me). I am neither totally conservative, nor totally liberal, I consider myself a moderate. My ideology: Middle Class and Main Street. Now there are those of you who will refuse to believe me and/or hate me for what I say. Frankly my dears.......I don't give a damn!
The American people sent a message to Congress about the payroll tax, and yes they will keep sending messages, especially in the 2012 elections.
The morons are the people in Congress, and all their special interests groups who are the ones from keeping this economy growing, and creating jobs, to those so called job creators with all those tax breaks, where are the JOBS????
The American people are fed up and our voices will be heard!
You know, there's a nice park right across the street where you could set up tents, within view of the White House, too....
Politicians acting like they have no connection to their super pac, what a joke!
Reenact the "Glass Steegal Act" Time to regulate the banks just as was done in 1933 to avert any possible chance of another "Great Depression", the banks lobbied hard in 1998 to have the Act Repealed by Clinton and both the House and Senate in full Bi-partisan agreement pressured the President on behalf of the Banks.
When the smoke clears and history reveals itself we will find that not even 5 years after Clinton deregulated the Big Banks the "Great Recession" had already begun..........
Regan removed government regulations of the S&L's in 1982 and in 1990 we had Daddy Bush's "S&L Crisis" which saw the Federal Government shutting down Savings and Loan institutions and selling off the holdings for pennies on the dollar.....
It took until 1995 for the Clinton Admin to overcome the downturn in property values due to the Appraisal Industry using S&L Foreclosure Fire Sales controlled by the RTC (Resolution Trust), this was a situation of deregulation of S&L's allowing them to act as Big Banks without the Regulation of the Glass Steegal Act Regulation..........and the results were the EXACT SAME AS WE HAVE NOW!
Check your Party Affiliation at the Door! This is all about Logic and Common Sense Now!
The only thing the 1% have to fear from these pseudohippies is getting a cramp laughing at them.
If they want jobs and prosperity and manageable college debt, here's a little formula for them:
- Take a useful major, e.g. engineering, accounting, business, etc. if you want a job at graduation. If you take sociology or art history, good luck, but don't whine to me when you have no skills.
- Work through college. I did, and full time. Still graduated near the top of my class.
- Go to school locally, and start at branch campuses.
- If you must take out loans, understand the ramifications of doing so, and be prepared to pay them back.
- Work hard, party less.
- Expect to start at the bottom after graduation. Your first job will be $h!tty. Deal with it.
- Get raises by working hard and putting in extra effort. Try to conform. Nobody promotes freaks.
- Did I mention work hard?
BTW, for any OWS taking notes, you're getting this advice for free. You should be happy, that's the way you seem to want everything else...
Why are you angry at corporations and their managers? They are just maximizing their tax deductions and taking whatever loopholes the congress has given them. YOU DO THE SAME THING! If you want to be angry at someone....try CONGRESS! Want change....forget corporations, and vote out every incumbent politician in the next election. Wow, will you see some changes!
But these entitled, coddled, morons are to stupid to think of that. They would rather camp out and complain about corporations who fund their parents' college savings plans.....you know, the plans that paid for their college tuition.
If there are 10 jobs and 20 people, there will be 10 unemployed.
If there are 20 jobs and 20 people, there will be no unemployed.
If there are 20 jobs, and then 10 jobs are outsourced, that does not mean that 10 Americans suddenly became lazy hippies.
Statistically, the unemployment rate has very little to do with personal attributes in the workforce, it is a function of viable employment opportunities.
I graduated in 2010 with $40,000 in student debt. No financial help from my parents, who do not have college degrees but work hard. I filled out my resume and applied. I got a job and now my student loans are down to $30,000. Weird?
You don't start at the top and you have to live within your means. You may have to move to a different geographical location but you have to start somewhere. As a young adult in my 20's I'm embarrassed of OWS.
There will always be someone that is better and who makes more. Swallow your pride and go get a job. I bet all the effort you put into protesting you could have had at least ten job applications filled out and proabably a job.
I think Martini has it right. I am concerned as a small business owner (35 employees) that these people seem to paint an awful lot of us (AMERICANS) with the same brush. I am not rich. I provide jobs by hiring when there is a need and the position will make profit and sense. This group concerns me because of the undefined word of "rich"..... Most of this group has no life experience or military experience. They sure don't have enough of anything to tell me how to run my business. They also have no right to a job. They have the right to compete for jobs. Usually the winner in the job interview is at least not a subversive. This group will never get past a pissing match with the police. To be truly effective they will need to be up close and personal in a real business' parking lot. When that happens I think they will have the experience of a lifetime!!!!! The average business man feels the same about his marginal profits as Wall Street feels about their huge profits. The retribution from these small business owners will be something this group will have never anticipated as a possibility. BRING IT.
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