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Politics, Culture and American Life

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Steve Bannon is no Populist. His own words prove it.

September 14th, 2017 · Fascism, General, Politics, Populism

by Joseph O’Shaughnessy

Steve Bannnon is no populist. In the Charlie Rose interview, part of which you can watch below, (although you should read the entire article first) he admits it by telling us that he is a populist and then describing the people with whom he associates. It is as if Goebbels said that he was a populist and then described his friends…Borman, Eichmann, Goering and, oh yes, Hitler. And then as if he went on to describe all their good works, like invading Poland and building small communities called concentration camps.

Charlie Rose quite cleverly lets him go on and on, rambling about his past successes, not realizing that some people are going to point out that all of those efforts were done to destroy the Middle Class, elevate the already elevated incomes of the Super-Right-Wing Rich, and to create lies and exaggerations that would elect Republicans. It is all about money, about getting it and using it to get more.

Bannon starts off talking about meeting with Trump with his mentor, David Bossie who founded Citizens’ United. Bannon says Trump understood the Tea Party, which makes sense, as the Tea Party is funded by his pals, the Right Wing billionaires, several of which are in his Cabinet.

It is not a grass roots movement. It never really was. It was a bunch of totally uninformed and deliberately misinformed citizens, organized by the Koch Brothers’ organization, Americans for Prosperity. The billionaires had decided that universal health care, while good for people, was bad for their tax bills in the long run. So we know that the Tea Party has long been a vehicle for the Right Wing of the Right Wing Republicans to protest against any kind of expenditure that will help the People. It is funded by the Right Wing Super-Rich to stop any spending on policies for the people, like health care.

The idea that either Bannon, or Trump is a populist is ridiculous. Bannon’s career was one of constantly attacking Democrats, who are all progressives and many, like Bernie Sanders, are on the extreme Left. In other words, he attacked politicians who are almost unquestionably themselves on the side of the People.

Bannon was part of a group that relentlessly attacked Hillary in particular for her support of human rights, civil rights, jobs, better wages, women’s rights and gay rights, as well as trying to prevent corporations from sending jobs abroad. He didn’t attack either George W. Bush or Dick Cheney who encouraged legislation actually designed to promote sending jobs abroad. In effect, Bannon attacked Hillary for being married to Bill Clinton. He blamed her for her husband’s trade policy, even though she had nothing to do with it, and even though it worked well until provisions were changed, just as was his tax policy and his anti-terrorist protections, after he left office.

Bannon says that he became involved with Trump while making a movie with Dave Bossie, one of the leaders of the ultra-Right Wing CPAC, Conservative Political Action Group. Bannon could often be found at CPAC meetings, along with the Koch Brothers and Rush Limbaugh. Not your basic Populists. Bossie had led the effort to enable the spending of unlimited funds by the richest Right Wingers in the country through Citizens’ United. He was funding a movie that Bannon wrote and directed, called “Generation Zero” in which Bannon blamed the Baby Boomer generation, the victims, not Wall Street, the culprits, for the Great Bush Recession. [Read more →]

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Beware of Presidents (and Congress) Promoting Walls.

September 3rd, 2017 · General, Politics, Populism

by Joseph O’Shaughnessy

In Populist Daily we submit information that we think is vitally important for citizens, particularly average citizens. But it is also for busy upper-income citizens to help keep everyone informed. These typical, normal individuals might often  consider themselves Republican.

So, if you are a Republican, (if not, please pass this location on to a Republican) do you consider yourself one who would kick young Mexican or Central American children or students out of the country, as the change in DACA would do? It doesn’t make a lot of sense to kick young people who will become valuable citizens out of the country summarily.  Most of you do think a “wall” beyond what we normally have is foolish. I’ve seen the current wall and it works.

In addition to the so-called Trump wall, as a Republican you may be asked to support another tax cut. It will increase revenues, they say. Well, we’ve had two tax cuts under Reagan and two under Bush II. And the national debt went from $800 billion to $18 trillion. The very wealthy, people who make a million dollars a year or more, and who do pay huge amounts in taxes but a very low percentage of their income, want this tax cut. But they don’t want to say…cut my taxes below ten percent, so they instead talk about something that we all agree on…like the problems of  illegal immigration. They want you to think that you, the upper income, almost-wealthy Americans will benefit from a tax cut too. So they want you on their side. So watch this video to see how they slant the message. It is short.

As you probably understood, this is a robotically created video, one of many being produced now by Right Wing…what we correctly refer to as Neo-Fascists. There are a number of these funded by the same billionaires who have funded the campaigns of so many different Right Wing candidates like Rubio and Cruz and others like the moron Rick Berry who can’t even count to three, until the clown car ultimately fell over and out came Trump.

Did this video make sense to you? Are we “on the brink of collapse?” Are we a “once proud nation?”  Were we under constant attack from–who? Exchange students from Iran or grandmothers from Yemen?  Does “ostrich disorder” hiding one’s head in the sand and ignoring threats more accurately describe Democrat Clinton who had a terrorist czar who warned the next (Republican) administration of the impending attack, or Bush II, who refused to read the report on terrorists and then went to the first tee and said, “now watch this drive.” Two weeks later 19 terrorists killed 3000 Americans. [Read more →]

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Why Republicans Can Be Called Neo-Fascist

August 25th, 2017 · Politics, Populism

By Joseph O’Shaughnessy

The Republican agenda is deeply unpopular. Trump is unpopular. Why then, could a man who is so unpopular now have been elected seven or eight months ago, November of 2016? There is a good reason.

He has often been called a Populist. The fact that he is still called that by many journalists only shows how poor our educational system has become. Trump is no Populist. A Populist would be a man like Robert LaFollette of Wisconsin, a Senator who fought against railroads to help poor farmers, or Theodore Roosevelt, who crushed giant corporate mergers that would have allowed them to raise prices through the roof on consumers ( a little like our current cable companies) and oppressed workers even further

Trump is nothing like them. Although we hate to use these names, he is like Hitler or Mussolini, who promised all kinds of good things for the People but then, when in office, joined with industrialists and the military to create a nightmare for everyone. That is not Populism; that is Fascism. We now know for certain that Trump, because of his lies, because of whom he supports, is not a Populist, but a Fascist. He has become the leading Neo-Fascist and–he is PRESIDENT!

If you remember nothing else, remember this. Trump is a fake-populist liar. That makes him a Fascist. Fascists are the opposite of Populists. There is NOTHING Populist about Fascism. It is exactly the opposite. It supports the interests of the rich and powerful in running a country through one political party that dominates, eventually becoming a virtual or real dictatorship. It controls through propaganda, spread in media, often owned or friendly media in which it can control the message. That message, which pretends to the truth and to help the people is always the opposite of what they are planning and doing. The people will eventually discover the truth, as we have about Trump, about what is or is not propaganda. But by then, as now, it is often too late and the tyrant is elected and begins to tighten control.

Now, let’s take the Republican plans, one by one. A full 84% of Americans are against the Republican health care plans. That shouldn’t be surprising. The Republican plan has not changed since the 2010 plan that they announced immediately after Obamacare was signed. [Read more →]

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Create New Unions to Rebuild the Middle Class

August 16th, 2017 · Jobs, Labor, Politics, Populism, Unions

By Joseph O’Shaughnessy

We’ve written about unions here before, about how unions gave us the forty-hour workweek and weekends and pensions and a lifestyle that allowed kids to get started in college. Unions gave us really good health care and job security that was as good as possible in a world where global economics forced many companies to send jobs abroad and enticed many others to do so for outrageous profit.

While trying to save a company and keep some jobs in the U.S. is only human nature, what is not human nature is to send jobs abroad when your company is making money. In Europe, sending jobs abroad simply to make more money for the biggest shareholders doesn’t happen. And why is that? Because in many countries in Europe union participation is about 23%. The United States is supposedly about 10.5 percent but that includes the government unions which are under attack constantly.

The only countries in the OECD, the European Union of advanced countries with union participation and support lower than the U.S. are Turkey and Estonia. The most prosperous countries, from the Netherlands to Denmark to Sweden are all have union participation above 50%, most above 60%.

The reason their jobs don’t go abroad is because those countries provide skilled education and retraining so that they can manufacture products and sell them cost-efficiently. Capitalism thrives on sales. Make something and sell it at a profit. The profit does several key things. It encourages people to invest in the company to get it started. Then, it allows the company to put aside money to grow, to pay bonuses, to improve the size of the company and therefore the profitability and therefore the wages of the workers.

The workers in Europe, because they are strong enough, have actual representation on the boards of corporations. Half of all seats on boards of directors on the largest companies are held for unions. And union workers in Europe therefore have far more benefits, far fewer working hours and far better working conditions. Where do American workers stand now? [Read more →]

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“Tax Cut Fever” Is as Nutty as Trump. Who’s Behind It?

August 5th, 2017 · General, Politics, Populism, Taxes

by Joseph O’Shaughnessy

Even the Liberal Media, in the form of the PBS Newshour has touted the success of the economy. Lowest unemployment in decades. Highest stock market ever. You can’t find a home to buy anywhere close to your price. So what is wrong? Why do we need tax cuts? Even if they produced a “stimulus” which they don’t…why do we need them?

We don’t. Nothing is wrong. Not with most of us. And definitely not with the economy. But in Wall Street and among the very rich everywhere, the opportunities to get another million…or, these days….to get another billion easily are topping out.

When you are just putting money into the market at ten million a pop and you only make a return of $300,000 or $400,000 in a week, why, good gracious…the sky is falling. When incomes are so high that investment becomes a parlor game, then currency literally becomes play money to billionaires. So, naturally, not remotely understanding or caring the hardship a tax cut for them will mean for hundreds of millions of other Americans, they stomp their feet and ask for “more.”

So, when everything is already going full speed, how do they make money faster for more and larger planes, boats, castles and private islands? Cut taxes. Let the rich keep ALL their money, they say. With Republicans having no shame whatsoever, feeling that they have no obligation to their constituents and no worry about treating their public office as a right, provided them by the rich, they will eliminate Medicaid for millions of Americans…it’s back to the emergency room for care.

You and I will be expected to get by on bigger deductibles and higher co-pays on Medicare and smaller Social Security checks from which Medicare is deducted.  Republicans want tax cuts for their constituents, the billionaire class (now over 50,000 in this country.)  But, are they more important than whether 50.000 to 100,000 people will die without access to health care as a result of these cuts…needed, the GOP says, so the rich can simply have “more?” [Read more →]

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Obamacare Is Not Collapsing or Spiraling Down. Just Fix It!

July 28th, 2017 · Obamacare, Populism

by Joseph O’Shaughnessy

The Republicans know that the Affordable Care Act, more popularly known as Obamacare is not “spiraling down” or is it irretrievably flawed.

The fact is that Obamacare worked well and, as we will show, continued to improve…and still does in many, many areas…until Senator Marco Rubio’s amendment in late 2014 to an appropriations bill ended the “corridor payments” a common situation in the insurance business, meaning payments to health insurers in new situations where conditions are not accurate enough from an actuarial standpoint to set rates.

Rubio’s amendment, a vicious political act, with a complete Republican Congress in control, when placed on an appropriations bill, meant that the President, then President Obama, could not stop it. The result was to completely pull the rug out from under insurance companies, not just huge ones making tons of money from Obamacare, but small co-ops who were taking a risk in order to offer hope in the form of affordable health insurance to millions who might otherwise, as we see now, not have health care.

Paul Ryan knows this. He is now fool. But he is the bought-and-paid-for lackey of the Koch Brothers. He is also the go-to guy of choice for Donald Trump on many situations. Ryan will work for anyone who will pay him. And he has done it again…this time…perhaps….to someone’s benefit besides his own. Given the connection between Scott Walker and Ryan and the huge number of anti-labor billionaires in the ALEC group, (the Right Wing American Legislative Exchange Council corporate CEO lobbying organization) it would not be a surprise to learn that the proposed  and welcome Foxcomm factory in Wisconsin was a payoff to keep Ryan in office…because it is going to be very clear soon that he has lied repeatedly about health care. And here is one example:

First of all, Paul Ryan never made a single comment when Rubio cut financial supports for health insurance companies out from under Obamacare. He never said a peep when 20 governors denied Medicaid to millions of Americans. In Virginia, just recently, television networks showed free, charitable clinics being sponsored in the western part of the state, as if we were in some foreign country and it was Doctors without Borders. The former Republican governor of Virginia denied his citizens Medicaid, as did many other Red states. Medicaid for the poor and elderly and homeless was free to these states…100% paid for by Obamacare and yet people like Paul Ryan sat by and said nothing as the Republican governor of Virginia denied care to the most vulnerable of his constituents.  But it need not be this way.  [Read more →]

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How Neo-Fascism works. Take Illinois, for Example.

July 23rd, 2017 · Democracy, Fascism, General, Lobbying, Politics, Populism

by Joseph O’Shaughnessy

In Illinois, there is a Republican Governor. And a Democratic legislature, thank God, That Democratic legislature is strong enough to overturn a gubernatorial veto. And it has. But the governor of Illinois, is not your average guy. He is an investment banker, an extremely wealthy man, worth hundreds of millions of dollars,  who has aligned himself with other very wealthy men whom we used to call Reactionaries or Right Wing.

You might be inclined to call our governor, Governor Rauner, of Illinois, a Conservative. And that is what he would like you to call him and it may be true that, at one time, he was a Conservative. But no longer. Conservatives have fought so long and hard for smaller, less service-oriented, less Populist government, that many of them, the richest, have decided merely to buy government.

That is where Conservatism leaves off and propaganda and dogmatic, single-minded, single-party rule begins. And what do we call that kind of rule. Well, it could become monarchy. Or it could be come aristocracy. But in a society where votes elect the rule-makers, it is called Fascism, or a latter-day or “new”–Neo-Fascism.

Neo-Fascism doesn’t put people in concentration camps. It simply creates laws that eliminate certain people from the voting rolls. It doesn’t beat people up in the streets; it simply does not tolerate any opposition or bring any opposing regulation or legislation to a legislature that it controls. It favors the corporations and donors who sponsor the one-party, the Neo-Fascist Party, (100% Republican) that runs that government. It doesn’t say that you can’t have a vote on a Supreme Court Justice. It simply used its total control of Congress to insure that no Supreme Court Nominee can be brought up to Congress for a vote…for an entire year…until a Neo-Fascist Supreme Court Justice can be nominated by an elected Neo-Fascist President.

Fascists created a national party that subordinated its members to the will of the “Leader” (Germans called it “Fuhrer.”) Neo-Fascists create health care legislation that will remove between 20 and 30 million people from access to regular health care. The result would be that, statistically, given the current status of health among Americans, between 200,000 and 250,000 people would die, probably in emergency rooms, over the next five years. Fascists made scapegoats of Socialists and Catholics and Jews. Neo-Fascists make fun of Blacks and Hispanics and the poor and the elderly. And, as recently as 2013, portrayed those thrown out of work by the deliberate Bush/Cheney  Stock Market Crash and Great Recession as “lazy,” “worthless,” “unemployable,” or “slackers.”

Neo-Fascists promoted the idea that being over 50 or not having a graduate degree made you “unemployable.”  And that, they say, is your fault. They are now a new category: the “unemployables.” The Bush-imagined “job creators” created jobs only in Asia. So they needed someone to blame, for their tax cuts that resulted in no new jobs, as Bush had promised. So we created the “part-time job” job.  Statistically, anyone employed for a day is considered employed. That way the Neo-Fascists could blame the problem on the people. “What’s the problem?” they could say. “The unemployment rate is under 5 percent!” So why are people on food stamps but have a job? Because they only work 20 to 30 hours a week so that employers don’t have to pay them benefits.  How do these people stay in power with such atrocious economics? [Read more →]

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Now Do You See What We Mean by Republican Neo-Fascists?

July 20th, 2017 · ALEC, Fascism

by Joseph O’Shaughnessy

If you’re going to be a good Fascist, here’s what you do.

Divide and Conquer. Find a scapegoat, preferably one with some disadvantage, someone who can’t strike back. Find rich, evil, greedy uncaring, perhaps bigoted, financiers and financial supporters…banks, giant global corporations and large numbers of those with inherited wealth. Align yourself with the military…never miss a parade or a chance to salute the flag, shake hands with common soldiers, get the support of those Generals whom you know believe themselves to be part of the establishment, specifically those who do feel this includes the common man. And whatever you do, do not let the people know that you never served in the military and did all you could to avoid it.

Complain about taxes and about how more and more people are becoming dependent on the government, while you cut taxes on people so rich that they don’t even know how much they pay in taxes or how much they have left. Never stop hiring lackeys who will work for good pay, many very educated but with no ethics or morals. Repeat to them what you want them to say–over and over again. You know. That government doesn’t work. Things should always be “spiraling down” or heading for “chaos” or some point of no return…always keep the people in fear of something.

And when the time comes, and all your propaganda should be delivered at millionaire wages by slovenly, fat, rich, radio hosts, or tough-talking but weak, puny-little weasels, who will hide out in remote studios, or skeletal, hollow-eyed, ranting women commentators, so horrific in aspect that people actually look away when they are talking.  Now the experience of our over 1000 Right Wing radio commentators of this kind, traitors to the people, to whom they tell lies for the oligarchs, tells us that this works. It has its effect upon the ignorant, the stupid, the uncaring, the intellectually lazy, the just plain damned fools and bigots. When this propaganda has had the effect that it has had for the Neo-Fascist Republicans, who are about the business of ruining health care for the next 10 years at least, then, Mr. Fascist leader–you’re ready.   [Read more →]

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Miscellaneous Right Wing Attacks on the People

July 18th, 2017 · Politics, Populism, The Budget

by Joseph O’Shaughnessy

There are so many things gone wrong today that we can only list some of them and point out the insanity of the world and the country in which we currently reside.

Hillary Clinton

A survey was recently announced in which more people dislike Hillary Clinton now more than they did during the campaign. Doesn’t this say more about the people who took the survey than it does about a woman who worked her butt off to be top at her high school, then brilliant valedictorian at Wellesley, the most prominent women’s college of her era, then a top student at Yale Law, then a volunteer worker for the rights of poor women and children and blacks in the south, then an advocate for better education for children in Arkansas, then a fighter who humiliated herself before the entire country as she was vilified by hypocritical Republicans, Right Wing Fascists, the health insurance industry and billionaires who do not want to give up another penny so that the poor and the middle class…as they do in every other advanced country…can have affordable health care. She was also, incidentally, along the way, a great Senator and a great Secretary of State. The ONLY reason for her vilification is an all-out campaign by some of the most evil people in this country, who only want to destroy her so that she could never be elected and provide the very thing we are still seeking….rational government and affordable health care. What a bunch of fools Americans are!

Dumpster, the American President

What has the moron done today, you ask? Today, he beseeched his thimble-brained followers to believe that the Democrats, that these pea-brained voters have excluded from government totally and completely, favoring the toadies of the Right Wing Billionaires, that these same Democrats, not involved in the process at at with Senator McConnell, Speaker Paul Ryan and the Neo-Fascists in the House and Senate, were actually somehow partially responsible for the failure of a bill which the Democrats would never vote for in the first place, as it disengages about 24 million people from their health care. Not only is Trump a liar but he thinks that all his dopey followers will believe virtually anything he tells them. But why not? He told Congress to “repeal” Obamacare right now. Don’t wait for new plans, he said. That, of course, would eliminate about 36 million Americans from health care. When you go to your club every weekend and play golf with other Right Wing billionaires, I suppose you have no idea about what is going on in the world anyway.

Senate Budget Cuts Social Security and Medicaid — Trump Lies Again

There is a new budget proposal from Congress, that is, from the Republicans in Congress. As one would imagine, it is a budget by Republicans for Billionaires. [Read more →]

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Don’t play the Trump Distraction Game. Focus on Congress.

July 10th, 2017 · ALEC, Fascism, General, Health Care, Human Rights, International affairs, Medicaid, Medicare, Politics, Populism, Social Security, Taxes, Trump

by Joseph O’Shaughnessy

We’re fighting the wrong wars with Donald Trump in particular and with Republicans in general.

It’s not about refugees coming to America. Banning immigrants without documentation from 7 countries, while perhaps wrong in its method, is not the biggest of our problems. In fact, it is not even the biggest problem for them once they are established in this country.

And it’s not about Trump and Putin. To you, right now, they’re irrelevant. You have bigger problems.

Trump, the dolt, the clod, the playground bully, relegated by his father to a military school to control his impulses, has stumbled into something that has some merit. Not for you. Against you.

Think about it. Trump doesn’t want then here at all…any of them–any immigrants really. Because, as he sees it, they cost him money. And guess what? That goes for every American. He thinks we all cost him money. Not make him money–which he could not make at all without us, but…cost him….money. That is how he thinks.

So how does he try to distract us, just as he learned to do in military school and in business school and in his business life? He uses “fake news.” It isn’t an accident that he uses that term. His whole life is fake news. He uses it as a weapon against people in his personal life, his business life and now against  you. Against the American people. [Read more →]

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Billionaires, Taxes and Inequality

July 1st, 2017 · ALEC, General, Politics, Populism, Taxes, Trump, Wall Street

by Joseph O’Shaughnessy

F. Scott Fitzgerald supposedly said to Hemingway: “The Rich are very different from you and me.” And Hemingway is said to have replied: “Yes, they have more money.” They were both right.

Unlike the billionaire, you can’t take a trip to Europe on a private plane or fly your horse (if you could afford one) to Great Britain on a plane for a horse show or visit one of your nine homes to see how things are in that part of the country. You can’t go to sleep at night knowing that almost anything that can happen to you, any sickness, any accident, any misfortune at all…you can afford. Those are all important things and ways in which those with hundreds of millions of dollars vary more and more widely from those of us who live in the nether regions.

But what is rich in 2017? From a purely monetary standpoint, in the United States it probably means being in the income categories above half a million dollars annually in income. Each area of the country is different, but generally speaking this kind of annual income means that one will likely be able to amass wealth. Wealth, or net worth, the difference between what we own and what we owe, is a measure of how well we are able to hang on to income over time. In places like New York City Los Angeles and San Francisco, costs of living are high and pure wealth is more difficult to attain and requires a higher income.

Here’s what we know about income inequality from revenues and taxes. About one percent of taxpayers in the country have incomes of $1.25  million a year on average. It looks like they pay a little over $300,000 in taxes. Of the roughly $1.23 trillion in taxes paid in total by Americans in 2015, the top one percent paid about 23% of it. They should. They earned about 21% of all income. (About 3 million people)  Another 194 million people, or 63% of the population averaged somewhere between $20,000 and $40,000 per year and paid less than 6% of all taxes. They should. They made less than 40% of the income while representing nearly two-thirds of the population. But that’s not the whole story.  [Read more →]

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Health Care Disaster Is Just the End of a Long, Long Road.

June 24th, 2017 · Capitalism, Fascism, Health Care, Lobbying, Politics, Populism, Social Security, Taxes

The Republican Senate, House, President Trump (sounds so ridiculous!) and the Billionaires have written you out of health care. And they will do more…cut taxes for the rich, end efforts to control air and water pollution, spend untold wasteful, profiteering amounts on the military and gradually shut down Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security.

Unless you act, that is, get out on the street with unions, firefighters, nurses, average workers at restaurants, airports, libraries, hospitals, auto repair shops–everyone–average Americans will lose the future. Right now, wages do not go up because 80% of the income, and there are hundreds of billions earned every year, go to the top 1% while 300 million Americans share the remaining 20%. You wonder why so many people struggle these days? Because Trump is right…the system is rigged. He should know. We elected one of those by whom the system was rigged.

Our American disaster did not happen overnight. The new Republican health care plan to repeal health care for tens of millions did not come into the mind of Mitch McConnell last week. This plan, so cruel and so damaging to the budget and perhaps even the stability of the few remaining Middle Class families, and devastating to the now vastly expanded number of poor working class families (more working people on food stamps than at any time in our history) came about as the result of years of Republican catering to and harnessing the spending power of the worst of the Neo-Fascist Right Wing Rich.

The con-man Donald Trump didn’t appear as if by magic on the political scene. He didn’t appear out of some white puff of smoke. The Republican Party, seeing that the Democrats in 2012, keeping a political campaign going right up until the Convention and then coming together, were able to dominate that election, decided, as usual, with more money from more from the “dark side” billionaires than ever before, supported  an unheard of 16 Republican candidates for President starting about a year early. [Read more →]

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Mitch McConnell Wants to Destroy American Health Care

June 12th, 2017 · Corporations and Industry, Democracy, Economics, Health Care, Human Rights, Lobbying, Medicaid, Medicare, Politics, Populism

by Joseph O’Shaughnessy

The Republican leader in the Senate is trying to rush through a secret health care proposal, bring it to the floor of the Senate without  hearings with Democrats, without amendments…in other words….in virtual secrecy.

So why would the Senate leader, Senator Mitch McConnell, want to do that? The most likely explanation is that he does not want to publicly allow the publication or the broadcast of the details to reach the American public. You see, Senator McConnell does not work for the people of the United States or even the people of his home state, Kentucky. Mitch McConnell is the leader of the Senate Republicans because he is the big breadwinner in the Party He has always been the big money raiser from corporations and large Right Wing billionaire and multi-millionaire donors. And he spreads it around.

This time it is the health care industry. This bill, this bill he wants to keep secret from Americans, and the Senate Republicans want to keep secret, is written for the health care industry. We know some of the provisions. First, it will allow free rein to all health insurance companies to go crazy with rate increases again. One company has already said that under the Obamacare provisions, removed by Republicans, and its “corridor” underwriting (that is, government support of companies surprised by unusual risks that might occur because of unforeseen demographics) rates might go up about 8.8%. Under the Republican proposal, which is secret…but we know the outlines, and we know who benefits….the opposite number—30% increases—are likely. [Read more →]

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Trump’s Lies About Climate Change

June 3rd, 2017 · Obstruction, Politics, Populism, Taxes, The Environment, Trump

by Joseph O’Shaughnessy

The President announced yesterday that he would disengage the United States from the world effort to keep climate change from completely submerging the state of Florida (which may not be all-bad in itself) and burning all our forests to the ground, not to mention a summer heat too hot to even consider playing tennis or golf.

The facts diverge quickly from those provided by Trump. Here are the facts.

    1. He says we will incur “legal liabilities.” Nonsense. We don’t have any more “legal liability” whatever that may mean…most people have no idea what he’s talking about…in the agreement than we do otherwise under international law. Again…probably a lie simply invented to create confusion. The agreement specifically states that there is no legal liability for any participant.
    2. China and India are not the leading polluters, per capita. America and China are the leading polluters per capita, and the U.S. emits more than five times more per person than a much larger and industrially more active China and 8 times more per person than India. But it sounds good to Trump because they have the largest, and in India’s case, the poorest populations. But they have huge problems that we do not have and they are making efforts to reduce their pollution problems, China, in particular, is moving very rapidly. Far faster than we are.
    3. Trump says it will cost $3 trillion to stay in. That’s a Koch-Brothers-Funded, Heritage Foundation think tank lie. The Koch Brothers own the largest polluting companies, have over 4,000 miles of pipeline (talk about liability!) and once paid the largest fine to the government ever for pollution. California proves that clean-air, clean-water and reduced total pollution creates more jobs, not fewer, and makes governments stronger, not weaker.

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