Wall Street and the big banks owe $1.5 trillion for the bailout (at least). The Super Congress needs to cut $1.5 trillion over ten years. Get the money from Wall Street and cancel the Super Congress. Problem solved.
Via Think Progress,
Last week, ThinkProgress reported that Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) believes that Medicare and Social Security are unconstitutional. Turns out, he’s not he only one. At a town hall in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) appeared to embrace Perry’s claim that providing for America’s seniors is unconstitutional:
QUESTION: With more and more cuts in Medicare and Medicaid on the horizon, I’m really worried about protecting our frail elderly in the Medicare and Medicaid facilities. So I would like to know how Congress proposes to balance the budget and still make sure our frail elderly in these facilities are protected and have trained care staff.
COBURN: That’s a great question. The first question I have for you is if you look in the Constitution, where is it the federal government’s role to do that? That’s number one. Number two is the way I was brought up that’s a family responsibility, not a government responsibility.
The video is embedded below.
Think Progress provided a good rebuttal - check it out at their link.
And treat this as an Open Thread.
This president will never do a single thing to oppose the the agenda of the ruling financial elite unless, of course, members of the ruling elite tell him to oppose something meaningless just for the sake of appearances.
Answer: The president is not in office to represent those people. He was selected, funded and carried over the finish line by corporate America. Look at the appointment of Wall Streeter Timothy Geithner, the bailouts, and the failure to prosecute any of the crooks who caused the current recession. He's serving the people who put him in office. Those people don't need Social Security and Medicare.
Copied entirely from Senator Bernie Sanders post of it.
Social Security - the most successful government program in our nation's history - is at risk.
Before Social Security was established 75 years ago, more than half of our elderly population lived in poverty. Because of Social Security, the poverty figure for seniors today is less than 10 percent. Social Security also provides dignified support for millions of widows, widowers, orphans and people with disabilities.
Since it was established, Social Security has paid every nickel it owed to every eligible American, in good times and bad. As corporations over the last 30 years destroyed the retirement dreams of millions of older workers by eliminating defined-benefit pension plans, Social Security was there paying full benefits. When Wall Street greed and recklessness caused working people to lose billions in retirement savings, Social Security was there paying full benefits.
Despite its success, Social Security faces an unprecedented attack from Wall Street, the Republican Party and a few Democrats. If the American people are not prepared to fight back, the dismantling of Social Security could begin in the very near future.
In the aftermath of the provably orchestrated and Shock Doctrine delivered Bankster Bailouts comes the inevitable Disaster Capitalism delivered message of "austerity for you". Well? If you understand Shock Doctrine techniques typically used to get what they want:
Households face the most dramatic squeeze in living standards since the 1920s, the Governor of the Bank of England warned, as he reacted to the shock disclosure that the economy was shrinking again.
Families will see their disposable income eaten up as they “pay the inevitable price” for the financial crisis, Mervyn King warned.
“The squeeze on living standards is the inevitable price to pay for the financial crisis and subsequent rebalancing of the world and UK economies.”
It is inevitable! There was a shocking disaster and everyone has to pay for it!
Well? The plebes have to pay for it.
Coming from the same guy that the Bush State Department - as evidenced by wikileaks #cablegate - was helping to orchestrate the bailout of the banksters 6 months before Bush finally was ready to deliver the scripted announcement of the "unforeseeable market disaster".
But this austerity moment isn't well planned, in advance, Disaster Capitalism and as a result of this latest phase of that orchestrated Shock Doctrine like delivered disaster either, eh?
Internet poster Jonathyn over at The Agonist came up with the most innovative and probably accurate explanation of the Democrats plans for social security. He asked the question, why aren't the Democrats making threats to Social Security the centerpiece of their congressional campaigns? The answer is as enlightening as Sherlock Holmes observation about the dog that didn't bark. If they're going to blow up Social Security in the lame duck session of Congress by endorsing Obama's Deficit Reduction Commission, there's a real risk to campaigning on saving the program. Can they be this vile? Are they this stupid? - Michael Collins (Reprinted with the permission of the author.)
Posted by Michael Collins
Your proceedings are clouded by illegitimacy.
The conclusion to be drawn is that Social Security should in any event be off the agenda of your Commission, as it is a transfer program and not a program of public spending in the economic sense. In particular it does not use capital resources and will not drive up interest rates. This is true whether the "Social Security System" is in internal balance or not.
There is no doubt that many in the right wing - most in the GOP, for certain, and many conservative Democrats, as well. The same core group of corrupt politicians and the entrenched interests that own them and that always try to sell out citizens to corporations, no doubt - are desperate to take Social Security down and hand your retirement fate over to the same parasitic kind of corrupting corporate interests that robbed the entire nation to keep their elitist Wall Street and banking schemes alive:
Remember that these financial institutions are still living off the fat of their corporate welfare from the bailouts.
It is going to be harder for them to justify keeping their many sources of Bankers' welfare checks rolling as long as they continue to not lend anything out to help save main street...
So they are still desperately in need of new streams of money to keep their mega-bonuses flowing.
They need a long term and massive gravy train source, as well and to put it bluntly.
Currently, Campaign for America's Future is working to help the majority Americans that do not want to see Social Security cut or privatized get politicians on the record concerning protecting Social Security.
TAKE ACTION Help us get candidates on the record to promise to oppose any cuts to Social Security benefits or any privatization schemes. Ask them to sign the promise, then email email@example.com with their answer.
Learn more | See the promise and the candidate roll call | Sign the petititon
The right wing, as it always does after a crisis that their free market ideology caused, is always looking to distort and distract from reality of what is happening. As evidenced in the very first link in this piece - Heck! There could be an illegal invasion about to start on near zero grounds (make no mistake, "regime change" and "pre-emptive war" are weasel words that the right and the media use that mean "ILLEGAL") and the GOP would try to distract with "issues" like "FreeDumb Fries".
Distraction and distortion is the only way the right wing (and the media that repeats the stupid) can keep you from talking about truth and reality. (More below the fold)
The kings and queens of the real world monopoly (and 10 digit welfare checks) are walking away from their million dollar homes now. Via Balloon Juice:
I can’t wait to hear how Republicans try to pin this shit on black people and Fannie Mae and Barney Frank.
A little bit from the article - "Biggest Defaulters on Mortgages Are the Rich" - below the fold.
So, Dick's got a brand new tea bag.
Freedomworks' Dick Armey is an astroturf-lobbyist whose job is to create a public outcry on behalf of the corporate interests that will benefit from the policy change that Freedomworks is hired to shepherd through Congress.
Dick's got a new message for the teabaggers. Watch this MSNBC report, in which he corrects Andrea Mitchell, the NYT, and all of the other media who just don't understand his teabaggers, no matter how much coverage they get.
Mother Jones has a long post on this but I am going to keep my point short. This was a last ditch effort using an appeal to the parliamentarian on the basis of an obscure link to Social Security. The GOP claimed that because Americans were going to make more money they would be paying more to Social Security... But this is the only real takeaway from their own argument:
Republicans tried to stop you from making more money.
How else do you read this:
and Social Security too, a fact that may upset some GOP activists
because they have to deal with that reality in the trenches and this is not something most of them want to talk to voters about leading up to the next round of elections. And given the fact that I am just a moderate little "i" indy with no party affiliation - I
just play nicer on the left/Democratic party side of the Blogosphere
because, much like myself and for the most part, they deal from the
reality deck - I thought I would point to a story in The New
Haven Independent covering CT-05's Rep. Chris Murphy discussing the
issue of Healthcare Reform with activists that understand the problems
we are all trying to deal with.
of running from health care reform, Democrats need to swing back, and
not dumb it down in reaction to right-wing talking points.
personally? I agree. Healthcare reform has been one of my pet issues
for years. I have written about the fact that it is quickly becoming
the anchor that will sink the entire US economy. And it is precisely
because of the fact that the for-profit driven insurance madness
currently sucks up about 16 to 17% of the USA's GDP, an astronomical
number compared to almost every other nation that we have to compete
with in the global market.
But it is not just applicable to the
auto industry. The competitive disadvantage this puts us at in the
global market and in every industry is mind boggling. Meanwhile, while
we suffer the consequences of not only being at a severe competitive
disadvantage, the for-profit insurers deny care to an ever growing number
Because of our dysfunctional system pitting
profits against the value of a real person's life or a real person's health, the uninsured have
zero access to basic primary and preventative care, the only care they
may have access to is costly hospital emergency room care, and a
growing number of people are seeing their private plans disintegrate in
value or being dropped completely by their employers. And the insured
still have to deal with ever rising co-pays that literally put access
to actually using their insurance out of their financial reach and have
to deal with insurance companies that pay bonuses to a herd of people
hired to do nothing but deny you care you already paid for in your
There are better answers.
And these better answers come from the reality side of the aisle I was talking about earlier in the post. While not all in the left nor on the Democratic side agree with this action, it is an action that they all admit would work:
Originally posted 2009-03-25 12:16:37 -0500, bumped by carol.
I feel wiped out. And it’s not from the flu. It’s from the financial news. Several people I know lost their families’ life savings that were invested with Wall Street wizard Bernie Madoff. My bank, which has been on a buying spree of failing financial firms, was insured by AIG. Not long ago, the president of the United States—the one with a Harvard MBA degree—was urging Americans to switch from Social Security to private investment accounts. Yeah, sure. The only reliable income I have right now is a Social Security check.
Progressives have been expressing some concern that Pres. Obama will be caught in a conservative frame simply by holding this conference. To counter this apprehensive and define the progressive position on so-called entitlements, Campaign for America's Future hosted a conference call for media, including representatives from various blogs. Unfortunately by an oversight we were not included; however the report below with links is a useful summary of the discussion. I would urge folks to listen to the full audio of the conference.