Blog Entry

How did we get here? What's next?

Posted on: January 7, 2012 1:15 pm
Edited on: January 11, 2012 12:06 pm
The plutocrats have by now sucked the air out of the Amerikan economy.

Will the dying(†) embers reignite, and what colours the flame?

 (†) The author wishes to acknowledge the suggestion contributed by the ashwhole screen-named SchteemeyCaca

Since: Jan 8, 2008
Posted on: January 16, 2012 10:01 pm

How did we get here? What's next?

And will it count towards my mandatory hundred hours of public service?

If a ho like Lindsey can get credit for time served and still try to steal jewelry, I will offer you a pardon.

I just need a pound of $50's.

Since: Sep 23, 2008
Posted on: January 16, 2012 9:22 pm

How did we get here? What's next?

You misspelled cite, you chronically-recidivistic repeat offender.

How many hours you publicly display your cervix is of no concern to me. I have bigger tunafish to frie.

Since: Feb 23, 2010
Posted on: January 16, 2012 5:50 pm

How did we get here? What's next?

Can I site this on my resume?

And will it count towards my mandatory hundred hours of public service?

Since: Sep 23, 2008
Posted on: January 12, 2012 11:11 am

the middle class freeze out (graphic)

Financial inequality is blooming before our eyes.
histogram of growth of real, after-tax income (during 1979-2007) for six different income groups:

...brings it on home.

Since: Sep 23, 2008
Posted on: January 11, 2012 6:11 pm

the middle class freeze out

Since its golden age in the 1970s, the Amerikan middle class' economic status has stagnated and shrunk. Only the influx of bucks from foreign investors has allowed the illusion of economic stability to be maintained. Conservatives couldn't care less, but the liberals managed to buy some time by redistributing wealth using subsidized mortgages. However, the bursting of the housing bubble has belied the facade.

Certain elements of society are doing very well, namely those who innovated the explosion of information technology, the Sickness and Death Industry, and the board room puppeteers. High end goods are flying off shelves, and the foothills are crammed with garrish mansions.

Meanwhile, many "middle class" families are working multiple, crappy jobs, including the high schoolers, whose ignorance cannot be overestimated.  They've been rendered obsolete by the very technology which has charmed them. They are bad debt in progress.

Financial inequality is blooming before our eyes.

Since: Jan 8, 2008
Posted on: January 11, 2012 1:57 pm

How did we get here? What's next?


We may remember that, at the start of the 2008 financial crisis, Iceland literally went bankrupt. The reasons were mentioned only in passing, and since then, this little-known member of the European Union seemed to drop out of the news.

As one European country after another faces near bankruptcy, imperiling the Euro, Iceland becomes a beacon of hope for choosing people over profit. Here’s why:

Five years of a neo-liberal regime led to a privatization of all banks in Iceland, (population 320 thousand, no army). In order to attract foreign investors, these banks offered on-line banking whose minimal costs allowed them to provide relatively high rates of return.

The accounts, called IceSave, attracted many English and Dutch small investors. As investments grew, so did the banks’ foreign debt. In 2003 Iceland’s debt was equal to 200 times its GNP, and in 2007, it was 900 percent.

The 2008 world financial crisis became the coup de grace. The three main Icelandic bankswent belly up and were nationalized, while the Kroner (Iceland’s currency) lost much of its value with respect to the Euro. At the end of that year, the country declared bankruptcy.

Citizens reclaim their rights
Contrary to world expectations, the crisis led to the people taking over their country, through a process of direct participatory democracy. This eventually led to a new Constitution, but only after fierce perseverance.

Geir Haarde, the Prime Minister of a Social Democratic coalition government, negotiated an over two million dollar loan, to which the Nordic countries added another two and a half million. But the foreign financial community pressured Iceland to impose drastic measures.

Protests and riots followed, eventually forcing the government to be replaced by a newly formed left-wing coalition.

The coalition eventually gave in to the outside demands that Iceland pay off a total of three and a half million Euros. This would require each Icelander to pay $130 per month for fifteen years, at 5.5% interest, to pay off a debt incurred by private parties vis-à-vis other private parties. It was the straw that broke the reindeer’s back.

What happened next was extraordinary. The belief that citizens had to pay for the mistakes of a financial monopoly, that an entire nation must be taxed to pay off private debts was shattered. Enlivened relationships between citizens and their politicians empowered Iceland’s leaders to act on the side of their constituents. The Head of State, Olafur Ragnar Grimsson, refused to ratify the law that would make Icelanders responsible for bankers’ debts, and supported calls for a referendum.

International community furious
The world only increased the pressure. Great Britain and Holland warned of dire reprisals that would isolate the country including cutting off aid from the IMF and freezing Icelandic foreign bank accounts.

In the March 2010 referendum, 93% voted against repayment of the debt. The IMF immediately froze its loan. But Iceland would not be intimidated. As Grimsson said: “We were told that if we refused the international community’s conditions, we would become the Cuba of the North. But if we had accepted, we would have become the Haiti of the North.”

With the support of a furious citizenry, the government launched civil and penal investigations into those responsible for the financial crisis. As a result, the former finance minister served a two-year prison sentence while Interpol put out international arrest warrants for bankers implicated in the crash.

Icelanders did also agree on certain budget cut measures such as disbanding their military infrastructure - the Icelandic Defense Agency (IDA), ceased to exist in January ‘11.

Iceland’s New Constitution
In order to free the country from the exaggerated power of international finance and virtual money, the people of Iceland decided to draft a new constitution.

They elected twenty-five citizens from among 522 adults not belonging to any political party but recommended by at least thirty people. The constituent’s meetings were streamed on-line, and citizens could send their comments and suggestions, witnessing the document as it took shape. The constitution that emerged from this participatory democratic process was submitted to parliament for approval this fall.

The people of Greece have been told that the privatization of their public sector is the only way to keep the nation afloat. The people of Italy, Spain and Portugal are facing similar pressures. They, and the rest of us could learn a lot from Iceland, refusing to bow to foreign interests and stating loud and clear that the people can and will take their power back.

For more from the source:

Since: Feb 23, 2010
Posted on: January 10, 2012 7:16 pm

How did we get here? What's next?

You misspelled dying, you commie bastard.

As for an accidently serious statement- Greed is mankind's most powerful force. Harness it, and you have the motor of a very powerful machine.

AKA, Go Plutocrats!

Since: Sep 23, 2008
Posted on: January 10, 2012 1:19 pm

harnessing the working class

The communists ultimately failed to harness the working class.

During the 20th Century, it became modestly realistic for working class people, or their children, to ascend into the middle class. Service enterprise jobs have been replacing industrial jobs.  A new bottom has also undercut the working class: immigrants, "ethnics", etc. 

More recently, working class honkies have been co-opted by conservative-foisted nationalism and by wingnuts (the latter especially in the Middle East). The union movement has lost its umph, in large part.

The rise of fascism in Hungary today is particularly interesting:


Since: Jan 8, 2008
Posted on: January 8, 2012 12:44 pm

How did we get here? What's next?

Here is another attempt by those in the ruling class to keep power concentrated in their hands/party. 

Since: Jan 8, 2008
Posted on: January 8, 2012 12:37 pm

How did we get here? What's next?

How did we get here? What's next?

Here is what is next....ooppss ... now!
the bottom bolded is what is really disturbing.

National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2012 was signed into law on December 31, 2011 by

The Act authorizes $662 billion in funding, among other things "for the defense of the United States and its interests abroad." In a signing statement, President Obama described the Act as addressing national security programs, Department of Defense health care costs, counter-terrorism within the U.S. and abroad, and military modernization. The Act also imposes new economic sanctions against (section 1045), commissions reviews of the military capabilities of countries such as , , and , and refocuses the strategic goals of NATO towards energy security. The Congressional Research Service provides a summary of the many provisions of the Act, available on the web.

The most controversial provisions to receive wide attention are contained in Title X, Subtitle D, entitled "Counter-Terrorism." In particular, sub-sections 1021 and 1022, which deal with detention of persons the government suspects of involvement in terrorism, have generated controversy as to their legal meaning and their potential implications for abuse of Presidential authority. Although the White House and Senate sponsors maintain that the already grants presidential authority for indefinite detention, the Act states that Congress "affirms" this authority and makes specific provisions as to the exercise of that authority. The detention provisions of the Act have received critical attention by, among others, the (ACLU) and some media sources which are concerned about the scope of the President's authority, including contentions that those whom they claim may be held indefinitely could include U.S. citizens arrested on American soil, including arrests by members of the Armed Forces.

Sorry for the earlier messy posting....I will get better.
Great news programming on Current TV ... The Young Turks.

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