Corporate Domination


Background Info and Links

Socialist Alternative

Center for Public Integrity: Most Corrupt State in the Union? GEORGIA

Capital In The Twenty-First Century - Thomas Piketty. 6 of the 10 wealthiest Americans are heirs. The next generation will be close to 10 of 10. He calls it ‘patrimonial capitalism.’ I call it plutocracy. Either way, it’s not democracy.

Here’s a good short summarization by PNHP. Karl Marx was right: The motivating force of capitalism is the exploitation of labor, whose unpaid work is the source of profit. The employer can claim rights to profit mainly through property rights enforced by the capitalist state. Without government intervention/regulation, wealth tends to concentrate towards the top creating greater and greater disparity between the classes. It is not hyperbole, but just a simple fact, that we are currently in the new Gilded Age, with wealth disparities that have not been seen since pre-WWI and Here. And as Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers put it: “The plutocrats fund the only two parties allowed to run for office and the people are manipulated by fear to vote against their interests in a mirage democracy of rigged elections.” And Here.


Common Dreams: Sorry Monsanto, The Science Is On Our Side, Not Yours


NYTimes: TPP Seen As Door For Foreign Suits Against US - Interesting that the corporate media is just now pointing out things that have been on this site since 10/4/13. Search Corporate Domination page for “TPP” for the rest.


The Nation: Want to Rebuild the Left? Take Socialism Seriously

NYTimes: First Amendment Embraced by Corporations - Related items for perspective: New Yorker: How Justice Roberts Orchestrated the Citizens United Decision; NYTimes: Justice Stephens Suggests ‘Solution for Giant Step in the Wrong Direction.’ and Stephens original dissenting opinion. Citizens United was originally a very narrow case about whether on-demand political movies could be aired within 30 days of an election. Roberts and Kennedy decided they would ‘hold’ the case back - a tactic almost never attempted by the Supreme Court - and completely rig the game by remaking the case according to their own personal agendas - completely unethical - which they knew would be decided in their favor by a 5-4 conservative court. The conservatives on the court then overrode precedent (1907 Tillman Act, 1971/1974 Federal Election Campaign Act, 1976 Buckley v Valeo, 1990 Austin v Michigan Chamber of Commerce, 2002 McCain-Feingold, 2003 McConnell v FEC) and used decisions dating back to the turn of the century (1886 Santa Clara Co. v S Pacific Railroad, 1905 Lochner v NY) that were rendered by the Gilded Age stacked court of the ‘Lochner Era.’ During their confirmation hearings, both Roberts and Alito repeatedly stated their intention to honor the principle of stare decisis - which they immediately proceeded to violate repeatedly as soon as they took their seats - a repeated lie for which they should be impeached.


Chris Hedges: Journalism As Subversion - “As the mass media, now uniformly in the hands of large corporations, turn news into the ridiculous chronicling of pseudo-events and pseudo-controversy we become ever more invisible as individuals. Any reporting of the truth—the truth about what the powerful are doing to us and how we are struggling to endure and retain our dignity and self-respect—would fracture and divide a global population that must be molded into compliant consumers and obedient corporate subjects.”


Democracy-NOW: Obama Seeks Fast Track for TPP, Trade Deal That Could Thwart “Almost Any Progressive Policy or Goal”

Democracy-NOW: Thousands Block Opening of New ECB Building in Frankfurt - 30,000 people show up for a protest against austerity in Germany and neither Wolf Blitzer now Rachel Maddow mention a word about it. How odd ;-)


Chris Hedges: The Most Dangerous Woman in America - ...if you happen to be a high level Democrat or Republican, that is, a servant of the Corporate class. The Democratic Party, previously the ‘party of conscience,’ is now totally unredeemable and completely in the service of Corporate Amerika. “If you take office you have to be accountable to the members of the party. You have to have actual meetings. People say they are Democrats, but when was the last time they were invited to a meeting and asked to vote on the policies to be taken up by the Democratic Party? The Democratic Party is utterly undemocratic—the party members and activists have essentially zero say over what their elected officials do once in power.”

Common Dreams: Four Numbers That Show the Beating Down of Middle America - Since 2007, Unregulated Capitalism has created $30 Trillion in new wealth. It ALL went to the top 1%. During that same time, the number of children on Food Stamps increased by 70%. Last year the top 0.1% made an average of $10 Million. During that same time 138,000 children had no place to live.

MoJo: Wall St.’s Bonus Packages in 2014 Exceeded the Pay of All Minimum Wage Workers


Salon: Thomas Piketty Slams Jeb Bush For Hypocrisy on Education

Daily Kos: Obama Creates Astroturf Front Group to Push for TPP - Fool me once...


AlterNet: Inside the Major Political Fight For Broadband Internet That’s Brewing Across America - Broadband internet is the one idea that I’m aware of that would take us out from under the thumb of cable giants and give us internet speeds rivaling the fastest in the world. Right now we pay the most of any country in the world and get outrageously slow response.


Socialist Alternative: Socialism and the Fight for Women’s Liberation


NYTimes: Wage Growth Slumps to 0.1% - A very modest growth in the number of jobs - mainly service sector (waiters and bell hops) is hailed as a ‘barnburner.’ Ridiculous. But wages remain stagnant. This is what unregulated capitalism gets us.


Common Dreams: #FightFastTrack Coalition Takes Aim at Pro-TPP Lawmakers


Reuters: As “Free Trade” Pacts Expand, US Trade Deficit Soars. Why Add Another? - The article points out that 5 million manufacturing jobs have been lost since NAFTA was signed. 3 out of 5 displaced workers who found other jobs are earning less money and over one third took a pay cut of at least 20%. TPP is only going to make this situation much worse.


Common Dreams: 4 Numbers That Will Make You Fighting Mad, And One Solution

Robert Reich: How Trade Deals Like TPP Boost the 1% and Bust The Rest of Us


NYTimes: Red States Consider Increasing Tax on Poor; Cutting Tax on Rich - Red state politicians love to say that cutting taxes on “job-creators” (meaning the rich) will encourage economic growth, provide more jobs and economic benefits for everyone - the often discredited ‘trickle down’ theory. I wish that just one time a reporter would ask “based on what empirical research?” There is none. The Reds have been saying that ever since Reagan, and the evidence shows that just the opposite occurs, along with increased deficits - North and South Carolina, Ohio, Maine, Kansas and the USA are all great examples. Yet voters in red states keep re-electing them. From Adam Smith up until today, the only empirically proven economic theories are those of John Maynard Keynes. Keynesian policies have worked every single time they have been implemented. They pulled us out of the Great Depression and were used successfully until the 1970s, and again as the 2009 Stimulus Package - which was also successful as far as it went before being sabotaged by neo-liberals.


Black Agenda Report: Loretta Lynch is Condoleeza Rice With A Law Degree - Straight from Cahill, Gordon & Rendall, whose main clients are Bank of America, Merril Lynch, Barclays, Citigroup, Credit Suisse, JP Morgan and Wells Fargo to Hogan & Hartson where she focused on white collar criminal defense.


Common Dreams: ‘Biggest Bank Leak in History’ Details Nefarious Tactics of Global Tax-Dodgers - More corporate welfare. When right wingers talk about entitlement programs, I’m thinking we should expand the definition of that term to include items like this.

Rolling Stone: Will HSBC Deal Come Back to Haunt Loretta Lynch? - The numbers here are truly staggering. HSBC was a creative tax evasion service, helping customers avoid $120 Billion in taxes in addition to currency market rigging and money laundering for the world’s largest drug cartels, such as Sinaloa. For this, Lynch and Holder worked out a sweetheart deal: penalties equal to 5 weeks of profit, and they got to keep their license to operate in the USA. The only conclusion one can draw is that our government encourages these activities. It’s just one big, worldwide criminal operation. What’s most interesting to me is how little there has been about this in the MSM.


Common Dreams: ‘Today We Celebrate’: Net Neutrality Advocates Cheer - I see this as a great milestone in the effort for full net neutrality. I can’t help but mention that a year ago all of the talking heads on NPR and the rest of the MSM were saying that all of the letters, petitions and demonstrations were not going to amount to a hill of beans. Now who’s got the swag! eh? But remember, this is only the Chairman’s proposal. It’s not a done deal yet. Also remember that the USA has the slowest, most expensive and lowest capacity internet/cable/mobile service of any industrialized country. Even S. Koreans get their data 10 X faster and 100 X cheaper that we do. But this is a great example of how the two ruling corporate parties and their political minions can be forced to do the right thing by large masses of people agitating for what is right. Don’t ever accept the ‘flavor of the month’ fashionable apathy that says there’s nothing you or I can do about it.

Democracy-NOW: Obama’s New Budget: An End to “Mindless Austerity”? - “So, this is maybe more thoughtful austerity...the point is, one of the reasons we’ve had such a slow recovery is that the government hasn’t been prepared to spend more, hasn’t been willing to increase the stimulus it gives to the economy, following a very severe recession. Every other recession, we’ve done that. In this case, instead of spending more, we’re spending less. We’re cutting back government employment. That’s hampered growth. And we’re still well below full employment, well below the economy’s potential. The Congressional Budget Office puts us at about 4 percentage points below the economy’s potential. That means, in effect, we’re throwing $720 billion a year in goods and services that we could be producing into the garbage.”

Black Agenda Report: Oprah and Sharpton Attack Black Lives Matter Movement


Common Dreams: The Super-Rich Can’t Hide From the Rest of Us - Rich beware, your days are numbered.


Intercept: Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous: This Week’s Episode: Tom Ridge - As you read this article, note all the names of individuals working with Ridge who routinely appear on the MSM as subject matter experts on the War on Terrorism (c), advocating for more government spending for war materials, cybersecurity, etc. Just another form of corporate welfare.


Super Bowl Advertising - $4.5 Million for 30 Seconds - Paid for with corporate welfare and Here and Here and Here.


Reuters: Senators Boxer and Paul Propose Yet Another Tax Holiday for Multinationals - Difference?


Common Dreams: 1/5 of All US Children Now on Food Assistance - To say nothing of the fact that 1/4 of US children go to bed hungry and more children in America than ever are homeless. The 1% must feel very good at night when they go to bed.

Intercept: Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous: Today’s Episode: Tom Daschle - Ex-Democratic Senator from South Dakota. Debunking the notion that ‘government doesn’t work.’ It works great for the insiders. It just doesn’t work for us.


NYTimes: Gains From the Economic Recovery Still Limited to the 1% - If you make in excess of $900,000 net income, not including capital gains, rejoice! If not, you are screwed. We are all stuck in 1970. Berkeley economist Emmanuel Saez has revised his original study. The 1% didn’t get ‘most’ of the gain, they got ALL of the gains from the so-called recovery. Here’s the definitive study for the entire period. Also see Here and Here and Here and Here and Here.

NYTimes: Kochs Plan to Spend Almost $1 Billion During 2016 Election Cycle


Common Dreams: Calling TPP a ‘Death Pact,’ Health Advocates Rally Outside Secretive Talks


NYTimes: Greece Chooses Anti-Austerity Party in Major Shift - See entry of 1/11. The news media often portrays the problems of Greece as all caused by a bloated public sector and highly inefficient public and private job sector. What is often left out is that the oligarchs in Greece control the economy and manipulate it to their own benefit at the expense of the working class.

NYTimes: Middle Class Shrinks Further as More and More Fall Out Instead of Climbing Up


Green Party Response to Obama SOTU

FireDogLake: Taken For Granted At World Economic Forum: US Government Is Run As A System of Legalized Corruption - It has already been scientifically proven that the US is a Plutocracy/Oligarchy. The entire world understands this. Why don’t most Americans? Fox, NBC, ABC, CBS, PBS, MSNBC, CNBC, etc.

Common Dreams: Progressive Voices Cut Through the Fog of Obama’s SOTU


Occupy: Nationwide Actions Mark Fifth Anniversary of Citizens United

Socialist Alternative Response to State of the Union Address

Black Agenda Report: State of the Union 2015: Lethal, Predatory, Delusional


Common Dreams: By 2016 The Richest 1% Will Own More Than the Rest of the World Combined - The wealthiest of all are mostly Americans “And it's not an accident. The world's most wealthy, as the Oxfam report documents, spend enormous amounts of their money each year on lobbying efforts designed to defend the assets they have and expand their ability to make even more. The world's wealthiest, reads the report, "have generated and sustained their vast riches through their interests and activities in a few important economic sectors, including finance and insurance and pharmaceuticals and healthcare. (me: It left out the defense industry $800 Billion per year all inclusive.) Companies from these sectors spend millions of dollars every year on lobbying to create a policy environment that protects and enhances their interests further. The most prolific lobbying activities in the US are on budget and tax issues; public resources that should be directed to benefit the whole population, rather than reflect the interests of powerful lobbyists.” Put another way, the government which was originally created to look after the “governed” and take care of the welfare of the country as a whole, is now simply a tool of the very few wealthiest people on the face of the earth. In cases such as this our founding fathers said that “it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”


Reuters: Obama Legacy: Middle Class Decline - During his presidency, “the average earnings for families in the top 10 percent grew more than 9 percent from 2010 through 2013, while those at other levels stagnated or shrank. For the middle fifth, average earnings fell 4.6 percent.”

Common Dreams: Just In Time for GOP Controlled Congress, Obama Announces Tax on the 1%


Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy: Report: Who Pays? - As a percent of income, the poor pay the highest effective state and local tax in all 50 states.

Popular Resistance: 8 Reports: Money Dominates Elections and Government Agenda - We ‘the governed’ have no say.

Reuters: Occupy Protestors Share $1.4 Million Settlement


It’s Our Economy: New Organization for Solidarity Economy, Postal Banking - Commonomics USA - protecting the commons. An idea that’s been around since the Magna Carta.


Frontline: Report: After Citizens United, Outside Spending Doubles and Most of it Is From the Super-Rich


Popular Resistance: Growing Chorus Rejects TPP/Fast Track - But it’s not over yet. This would be a tragedy easily on a scale with Citizens United.

Common Dreams: Congressional Democraps Taking Meaningless Progressive Stands - This article has a check list of Democraps that will help Rethugs pass the corporate agenda. See yesterday’s entry below.


Common Dreams: Mainstream Dems Suddenly Strike Populist Tone and Washington Post - This is a familiar pattern. When the Dems are out of power, as in 2000-2006 and now, suddenly they go all populist. But as soon as they get back in power, it’s all off the table. The proposals in the bill are all items the Dems should have been pushing 10 years ago, when they actually had the power to make it happen. Now that they’re out of power, they get religion. Remember “The People’s Budget”? Remember the Dems’ pledge to refuse to ever ever vote for a health care reform bill that did not contain a public option? They collected over $400,000 in small contributions for that pledge, then they broke the pledge and passed the law without it - and kept the money. When Dennis Kucinich refused to break his pledge, MoveOn picketed his headquarters in Cleveland until he relented. Then when the Rethugs gerrymandered Kucinich’s district so that he and Marcy Kaptur had to oppose one another, the DNC threw all of their support to Kaptur. This is what they do to true populists. Don’t listen to what the say. Watch only what they do.


Reuters: Spain’s Podemos Party Surges Ahead in Voter Poll - This is a very interesting development within the context of worldwide discontent with the 1% and the status quo, and the rise of a multi-country Socialist movement. Founded only last year, Podemus, a leftist, anti-establishment party, is currently the second largest party in Spain by membership. It became the third largest party within 20 days of allowing membership. It is currently in the lead to win Spain’s next general election. Podemus party leaders have allied themselves with the anti-austerity Syriza party in Greece.

Podemos has leveraged discontent over corruption in the political class and high unemployment by portraying the two big having vested interests in maintaining the status quo while ordinary people suffer the consequences of a gruelling economic crisis.” Sound familiar?

Brazilian ecologists, whose main focus is on saving the Amazon rain forests - one of the largest CO2 sinks on the planet - from clear-cutting, are forming a new party based on Podemus.


Common Dreams: Bernie Sanders: ‘Incomprehensible Secrecy’ Surrounding TPP and Fast Track - Bernie’s 10 top reasons why TPP must be defeated.


Democracy-NOW: Matt Taibbi: Who Goes to Jail? American Injustice In The Age of The Wealth Gap


Socialist Alternative: Victory Against Seattle Rent Hikes - This is more about how a working-class community working together with a spokesperson in elected office who is not already bought and paid for, can accomplish major gains for real people. Just one example of several major accomplishments by this third party...more than any other left wing party in my memory.

AlterNet: How American Corporations and the Super Rich Steal From the Rest of Us - In a nutshell.


Common Dreams: Pew Research Center: Wealth Gap In US Widest In History


Open Secrets: Wall Street’s Omnibus Triumph, and Others

Reuters: US Corporations Winning Fight Over Human Rights Lawsuits - Really? Can the Whore Court do anything more to lick the boots of corporations as they treat their communities, workers and customers like animals with complete impunity?

NYTimes: Insurers Use State Laws to Avoid $100 Billion in Taxes - More corporate welfare.


Washington Post: Jamie Dimon Testifies Before Congress in Favor of Relaxing Regulations Allowing Banks to Bet On Derivatives Using Your Money and NYTimes - More corporate welfare. Privatize the profits. Socialize the risks. Dodd-Frank was a farce, is a farce because the RepubliDems - who owe their jobs to Wall St. - passed it. Been saying so here since 5/19/10.


MSNBC: Behind Closed Doors: Congress Readies Spending Bill Loaded With Giveaways For the Rich - How political dysfunction helps lobbyists and kills transparency. Regulations on credit derivatives, one of the major provisions of Dodd-Frank, rolled back; maximum work week moved from 70 to 82 hours; limits on donations to political parties removed, “and a whole slew of policy deregulation.” More Kabuki.

Charlotte Observer: Congress Slashes EPA, Bank, Pension, and Campaign Finance Regulations

Bloomberg: Efforts to Curb Move of Tax Addresses Overseas Fails Again - Pure corporate welfare.


Democracy-NOW: How ‘Corporate Conquistadors’ Both Drive and Profit From Climate Change


NYTimes: Energy Firms in Secretive Alliance With Attorneys General - Oil/Gas firms give tens of millions of dollars ($16 Million just in the last year) to state Attorneys General and in return the AGs fight EPA regs. I can’t tell the difference between R/D politicians and just straight up mobsters anymore.


Socialist Alternative: The Coming Wave of Struggle - Don’t worry. It’s a good thing. Just try not to let it pass you by.


Reuters: Minimum Wage Fight Hits Hits the Streets in 200 US Cities - When you see the MSM start to cover demonstrations by working people, you know they’re getting too big to ignore. Now think about where this all started and Here. And fashionably detached Post-Modernists will tell you ‘It is naive and maybe even dangerous to try to change anything. Just accept that you are powerless.’ Not so, but corporate Amerika would like you to think so. “You can’t be neutral on a moving train.” - Howard Zinn


Washington Post: Obama Will Partner With Republicans to Get TPP Done - The stuff about ‘defying Democrats in Congress’ is just part of the Kabuki show. You can ignore that.


AJC: Companies Reap Big Tax Savings From Executive Stock Awards, Stock Holders Not Consulted - This is how it works: C-level employees and Boards of Directors get obscene salaries and bonuses, which slashes ‘net profit,’ which slashes their corporate tax liability. ‘Budget hawks’ in Congress get their share and then use the loss of government revenues as an excuse to slash safety net programs (Social Security, Medicare, Welfare, Aid to Children, etc). 25% of children in America go to bed hungry every night. More homeless children in America than ever in its history. We are doomed without a wealth tax. There is an alternative.


NYTimes: On Black Friday, Worker Protests at Walmart Press for Wage Increases

Bill Moyers: The Long Dark Shadows of Plutocracy - Moyers is a tragi-comic figure. His shows constantly expose the facts that would logically lead one towards socialist principles, but in the end...he supports whatever neo-con, neo-liberal candidate that the Democrats offer up. Still an interesting article.


NYTimes: The Fight for $15.37 per Hour


Bill Moyers: Dividing The Spoils - The military/financial/health/energy/media/retail/pharmaceutical complex now owns our government. The people are merely pawns moving on a giant chess board. The GOP has become the Guardians of Privilege and the Democrats “meanwhile, are so compromised by their own addiction to Big Money they have forgotten their history as champion of the working stiff, the little folks down there at the bottom.” The solution of his guests: recruit people outside of the 2 party system to run on an anti-trust, anti-corruption message and fund those people through a type of crowd sourcing and appeal even to the very rich who see that the system is broken.


NYTimes: Falling Wages At Factories Squeeze Middle Class - The downward spiral continues. Capitalism is NOT working.


Black Agenda Report: Beyond Midterms, Moment of Opportunity - More and more people are beginning to realize that the ‘liberal imperialism,’ lesser of two evils perennially offered up by the Democratic party is just a strategy to move the Rethugs further to the right and keep the plutocrats in power. Here is another source advocating for a ‘socialist alternative.’ It looks like BAR is yet to discover that there is in fact a Socialist Alternative.


Common Dreams: More Homeless Children in US Now Than At Any Time in History


Reuters: US Capitol Workers On Strike


MoJo: The Richest 0.1% Is About to Control More Wealth Than the Bottom 90%


NPR: In China, Obama Pushes TPP and RT News - He and McConnell are now going to team up to get this done. Difference? For a good run down of why this law is so bad, see or read this interview, or do a search on Corporate Domination and Corporate Domination 2nd Half 2013 pages for “TPP.”

NY Daily News: 90 Man Faces Jail Time For Feeding the Hungry


Socialist Alternative: Mid-Terms Do Not Mean A Turn to the Right


Common Dreams: US Corporations Top the List of Those Living in ‘Magical Fairyland’ of Tax Dodging and UK Guardian - Companies like Pepsi, FedEx, JP Morgan Chase, Amazon and many more move their profits through Luxembourg and pay 0.5% tax. And we wonder why our schools, roads, bridges, veteran care, Social Security, Medicare, etc etc etc are being destroyed.


Black Agenda Report: Zombie Dems vs Zombie Rethugs, Zombie Consensus Wins Again!


Contra Costa Times: Anti-Chevron Candidates Sweep to Victory in Richmond - Possibly the most important story coming out of Tuesday’s midterms. Chevron spent $$$ millions to try to control this election to no avail. Their candidates were swept completely out. My guess is that they are not using Diebold voting machines in Richmond.

Democracy-NOW: Voters Missing in GA? After Registration Drives In Areas of Color, 40,000 Names Left Off Rolls

NYTimes: As New Rules Take Effect, Voters Report Problems in Several States - The streak remains unbroken. Not one single Dem has been elected to a major statewide office since the full introduction of non-verifiable voting machines in GA in 2002.


Socialist Alternative: Midterm Elections and the Dysfunction of the Two Major Parties

Democracy-NOW: How To Buy a City


NYTimes: Why the US Has Fallen Behind the Rest of the World in Internet Speed and Affordability - See also entry of 7/9/14.


Yes Magazine: Before the Zombie Apocalypse - These 4 Trade Deals Were Ravaging the World - WTO, TPP, TTIP, NAFTA


NYTimes: Bushes Rally Behind Jeb - So there you have the corporate choice for Rethug, while Hillary will be the corporate choice for Dcrap. And that’s all that’s left of ‘the greatest democracy in the world.’


TruthOut: IRS Whistleblowers: IRS Execs Behind Multi-Billion Dollar Giveaways to Corporations - ...while individuals are hounded into jail and bankruptcy for the exact same violations. More Corporate Welfare. The numbers here are truly staggering. Lost government revenue to large corporate cheaters in the $$ Hundreds of Billions per year. Trillions are stashed in off-shore tax ‘havens.’ Before his appointment to Treasury Secretary, Jacob Lew headed up the Citigroup division that oversaw the bank’s expanding investments in the Caymans and even set up one for himself. This is all very routine and established practice for the 1%. But no worries, the whistle-blower letter was copied to Elizabeth Warren. I’m sure she’ll put a stop to this immediately! Right.


UK Independent: Phillip Morris Sues Uruguay Over “Loss of Future Profits” - PM, which recently moved its headquarters to Switzerland to hide profits from the IRS, sues Uruguay for passing a law that PM feels harms its future profits. Bizarre, but that’s the new reality. This is a test case under TTIP, but if TTP passes, this will become the new norm.

NYTimes: States Ease Laws That Protect Poor Borrowers - Big winner: Citigroup, where our current Sec. of Treasury used to be Chief Operating Officer and ran a division that bet heavily on the housing market to collapse.

RT News: GMO Backlash: Syngenta Faces Mounting Lawsuits Over Genetically Modified Seeds


Truthdig: Chris Hedges: The Imperative of Revolt

Globe and Mail: Human Rights Groups Argue Against Chevron in Ecuador Cleanup Dispute - Also check out the movie Crude.


DeSmogBlog: Fossil Fuel Industry Spent $213 Million Last Year to Influence Politicians

UK Evening Standard: Occupy London Begins Week of Protest


B. Sanders: Fed Chairwoman Agrees: Income and Wealth Inequality is the Greatest Its Ever Been and It Threatens Democracy - So what do we do about it? Either we tax the rich or we eat the rich!

Common Dreams: Bernie Sanders: Purchase of Election by Chevron Shows We Have an ‘Oligarchy, Not Democracy’ - We’ve had scientific proof of that for some time now, published in Political Research Quarterly by researchers from U Conn and Trinity Univ., and Here and Here. “The preferences of the majority of Americans appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy.”

NYTimes: How Billionaire Oligarchs Are Becoming Their Own Parties


Washington Post: Rental America: Why the Poor Pay $4,150 for a $1,500 Sofa


Common Dreams: The Top 1% Own Half


In These Times: Can Climate Change Unite the Left? - “To avoid catastrophe, we must seize corporate polluters’ wealth. And to do that, we must change everything.” What’s needed: longterm public planning, saying NO to powerful corporations and making the polluters pay. If our government can print money (about $2.5 Trillion and counting) and just hand it to banks (aka ‘Quantitative Easing’), then it certainly should support clean renewables to at least that amount. If oil companies can make $100 Billion in profits per year, then that money should be going towards mitigating climate change instead of into the pockets of their Boards of Directors and C-level employees. The Exxon CEO makes over $100,000 per day. This article contains plenty of good solutions.


Common Dreams: Philadelphia Students Walk Out After Attack on Teachers’ Union - A Rethug governor plans to ‘dismantle’ the teachers’ health and pension fund. The governor’s opponent, who happens to be ahead in the polls, has been a strong opponent of charter schools. Reading between the lines, the plan might be take the health/pension fund and use the money to ‘subsidize’ new charter schools. Somebody needs to check out the contribution level of outside corps that are funding the Rethug’s re-election campaign.


Center for Economic and Policy Research: Capital in the 21st Century: Are We Doomed Without a Wealth Tax? - Probably. Capitalists are generally so blinded by their greediness that they don’t see the ultimate breakdown in society that will lead to their demise.


AlterNet: The 14 Richest People Made More Money Than the Entire Food Stamp Budget - For the second year in a row.


Friends of Earth: US-Europe TTIP Trade Document Confirms Chemical Industry Attack on Health Safeguards


NYTimes: As Fed Retreats From Stimulus, Central Banks Overseas Expand Theirs


MoJo: Chart: Half of All Income Goes to The Top 10%


Salon: Bernie Sanders: Longterm Democratic Strategy is “Pathetic” - The 400 wealthiest Americans are worth $2.29 Trillion ($2.29 thousand billion), up $270 Billion from last year, a 13% increase. They now own more wealth than the bottom half - 150 million people - of America. Meanwhile median family income has declined by almost $5,000 since 1999 and over half of Americans have less than $10,000 in savings. This wealthy class is now pumping $ Millions into federal campaigns to elect candidates, both Democrat and Republican, who will gut Social Security (currently a very stable and secure safety net, contrary to what is generally reported in the press), Medicare, Medicaid, and federal aid to education. Neither major party is talking about this.

Bernie on CNN


MoJo: Chart: You’re Working More But Earning Less - Unregulated Capitalism - the most evil system ever devised by man.


Rolling Stone: Inside the Koch Brothers’ Toxic Empire - Koch Industries pours more toxic substances into the air and water in the US than almost any other company. Their business model is to break laws and pollute and then just pay the paltry fines when they are caught. The people who really pay are the members of the communities that are left with the damages, health issues and cleanup. When you hear Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell say that ‘the EPA is out of control,’ that’s because he’s taking loads of Koch money through non-traceable 501c3 pacs.


Common Dreams: ‘You Are Not A Loan’ Occupy’s Rolling Jubilee Abolishes $Millions in Student Debt - For those who say that Occupy has accomplished nothing, let them check this out.


NYTimes: Corporate Executives Pocket Profits Rather Than Reinvesting Them


HuffPo: Seniors Forced Into Poverty As Education Dept. Demands Payment


Popular Resistance: Newark, NJ Students Protest Privatization of Public Schools - Gov. Christie and big money donors have devised and implemented their plan: “One Newark.” The purpose of the ‘plan’ is to make for-profit charter schools the only viable choice for students or go to now underfunded and overcrowded public schools. The demonstrations were non-violent until the police arrived.


Reuters: America’s Wealth Gap ‘Unsustainable,’ May Worsen - Check out this short video for clearer picture.


NYTimes: Some Retail Workers Find Better Deals With Unions


Common Dreams: Nation’s Poor Remain Hungry While Wall Street Feasts - 50 million Americans experience ‘food insecurity.’ 16 million children (1 in 4) go to bed hungry every night. We are “a country that combines massive hunger with record Wall Street profits.” This is not somebody else’s problem.


LA Times: Former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor Moves to Wall Street - Don’t let the breeze from that revolving door knock you down. He’ll go from $193K per year to $400K plus millions in ‘incentives.’

NYTimes: After Cantor’s Exit, House Turns Sympathetic Ear From Big Business to Oil and Gas


Harvard Business Review: Profits Without Prosperity - Synopsis: Corporate profits continue to soar. But middle-class workers get none of the benefits. Wage rates are stagnant. Why? Because since 2003, large corporations have spent 91% of their earnings on stock buybacks and investor dividends. They have spent practically nothing on investment in capital improvements and R&D, the things that would add jobs and increase salaries. The only people benefiting are the C-level employees and members of Boards of Directors in the form of multi-million dollar salaries and bonuses, in essence getting paid to do nothing productive. This is not sustainable. Capitalism is not working.


Democracy-NOW: The Biggest Tax Scam Ever How Corporate America Parks Profits Overseas, Avoids Billions in Taxes

NYTimes: Businesses Are Winning Cat-and-Mouse Tax Game


Politifact: Bernie Sanders: Tax Share Paid By Corporations Has Fallen From 33% to 9% Since 1952


NYTimes: How the Supreme Court Protects Bad Cops - For the current Whore Court, ideology trumps the Constitution every time. It is now a totally illegitimate body, that supports an illegitimate system from top to bottom. The 1% - both the ones to whom the Whore Court justices owe their appointments and the justices themselves - understand that the police are the only thing that stands between them and the pitchforks. They now rule only from the barrel of a gun. Someday that will change.


MSNBC: President Obama Signes $8.2 Billion Cut in Food Stamps - Thus cementing his reputation as a complete neo-liberal and fraud. Typical Democrap, no different than Rethugs. Never listen to what they say, only watch what they do.


Intercept: The Militarization of US Police: Finally Dragged Into the Light By the Horrors of Ferguson - 9/11 has been the gift that keeps on giving...from at least two new major wars, drone murder around the world, the vast increase in size of our surveillance state, the creation and growth of DHS, to local police departments...and has changed many police departments from servants of the public into an occupying force. Given this ongoing set of effects, it behooves us even more to take a look at the many unresolved questions surrounding that fateful day. See entries of 6/27, 6/11, 6/8, 4/10, 3/20, and especially 2/13/14 for important links.

Time: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: The Coming Race War Won’t Be About Race - As long as the police and the judicial branch continue to mis-interpret the Constitution in favor of the rich, class war becomes more and more inevitable. Since 1970 the percentage of ‘middle-class’ Americans has been dropping and the percentage of Americans in poverty has been on the rise. But instead of focusing on the causes of this change, the corporate controlled national news media attempts to keep us focused on immigration, abortion, gun-control, etc. Anything to keep the minds of the people diverted from the real causes of the ever-widening wealth inequality in this country.


Common Dreams: Justice Denied: US Court Rejects Bhopal Victims’ Claims Against Union Carbide - To quote one of the commenters: “Corporations are just like people, except when they don’t have to take responsibility for their actions.”


Reuters: Race For N Dakota’s Ag Commissioner Is All About The Oil


Democracy-NOW: Nobel Economist Hails New BRICS Bank, Challenging World Bank and IMF

Reuters: US Senate Votes to Extend Terrorism Insurance - More corporate welfare on the way.


Bill Moyers: Capitalism’s Deeper Problem

Democracy-NOW: The Prosecution Gap: Corporate Polluters Rarely Charged For Violating Environmental Laws


Socialist Alternative: Revolutionary Teamsters - A history lesson from 1934 with strong parallels in today’s unions and today’s economic environment.


NYTimes: This Road Work Made Possible by Underfunding Pensions - This article assumes the only alternative is an increase in the gas tax, which is not a bad idea, but is not the only alternative. How ‘bout we start letting the 1%, who own over 40% of all assets, start paying ‘their fair share?’


NYTimes: A Threat to Internet Freedom - This Fresh Air interview explains it pretty clearly as well. See entries below of 5/15, 5/2, 4/25, 4/23, 2/19, 2/6, 1/14/14.

Bill Moyers: Is the Supreme Court Out of Order?


Democracy-NOW: The Koch’s Anti-Civil Rights And Their Ties to the Beginning of The John Birch Society - Fred Koch was a founding member and the brothers followed right along.


Washington Post: Obama and Democrats Shift Rhetoric to the Right; Abandon Talk of Income and Wealth Inequality - Difference? Nope, just more of their fake ‘populism.’ If they really wanted to adopt a populist set of initiatives, they might start with:

1. Jail the bankers who crashed the economy. Tax Wall Street earnings at 90% and nationalize any bank that is “too big to fail” in order to bring them under control.

2. Raise the national minimum wage to $15 an hour.

  1. 3.Expand Social Security by lowering the retirement age to 60, to be paid for by expanding payroll taxes to higher earners — who currently pay no Medicare and Social Security taxes on income over $110,000. 

  2. 4.Free university education — to be paid for by taxing the rich and corporations. Eliminate crushing student debt. 


Socialist Alternative: Recent Court Rulings Value Bigotry Over Women’s Rights - “The rulings are misrepresented as issues of religious freedom and freedom of speech, but give cover to the far right bigotry that has aimed to scale back women’s rights for decades. The immediate and devastating consequences for millions of women will reinforce sexist ideas and economic inequality.”

Common Dreams: Hillary Goes To Bat for GMOs


Bill Moyers: Grass Roots Grow Against Greed

AlterNet: As You Celebrate the 4th, Remember Why American Families Need Unions to Stay Strong


Bureau of Investigative Journalism: Access All Ministers: Billionaires and Lobbyists At Lavish Party With British Prime Minister


Time: Whore Court Deals Public Unions A Blow and Here - Good bye 40 hour work week, 2 weeks paid vacation, child labor laws, OSHA and worker protections, paid health care - all concessions first negotiated by unions - after literally shedding blood in the streets - and then adopted by other employers in order to compete for good workers. It’s only a matter of time now. I’m sure the Koch brothers are celebrating. The Constitution and our three branch national government is now a meaningless and invalid.


IPS News: UN Human Rights Council Adopts Proposal to Negotiate Treaty to Prevent Transnational Corporations From Violating Human Rights; Obama and EU Quickly Refuse to Cooperate - And we always thought that ‘majority rules’ eh? This all came about because Obama and the EU know that Fast Track, TPP and TISA will violate human rights all over the world.


AlterNet: 11 Facts About America’s Militarized Police Force - The better to occupy America. Chris Hedges solution, see especially Lesson No. 5 and 9. As soon as the police realize that their interests are the same as the protestors, the revolution is all but over.


NYTimes: Mayors Focus on How to Raise Wages for Lowest-Paid Workers - Without Occupy and Kshama Sawant, we wouldn’t be having this conversation. For those who say that Occupy is dead and never accomplished anything, take a look here.

Common Dreams: Tens of Thousands in London Demand an End to Austerity


Democracy-NOW: A Secret Plan only Banksters Could Love: Wikileaks Reveals TISA: A Push for Global Deregulation and Common Dreams and Wikileaks


NYTimes: Whore Court Ruling on Argentina Gives Investors an Upper Hand - And may make it impossible for 2nd and 3rd world countries to ever get out from under the thumb of hedge fund bond holders and the IMF - mandating permanent austerity and poverty. This in turn creates a vast pool of semi-slave labor just waiting to be exploited by multi-national corporations.


Democracy-NOW: The World Cup You Won’t See on TV and DC Media Group - Pics you won’t see anywhere else.


Common Dreams: NYC Settles Over Police Suppression of Occupy Protest and OCCUPY


Truthdig: The Rules of Revolt - See especially Lesson 5 and Lesson 9. See also entry in this section of 6/8.

Common Dreams: FAA Approves First Commercial Drone License....for BP


Sustainable Agriculture: US Government Ties El Salvador Aid Package to Use of Monsanto GMO Seeds

Bill Moyers: How Seattle’s $15 Minimum Wage Victory Began in NYC’s Zuccotti Park During Occupy Wall Street - While McDonalds workers mostly earn minimum wage, CEO Don Thompson made $9.5 million last year, $9,247/hour. “Low wages paid to employees of the 10 largest fast-food chains cost taxpayers an estimated $3.8 billion a year by forcing employees to rely on public assistance to afford food, healthcare, and other basic necessities. The Institute for Policy Studies, in a report released in March, found that the $26.7 Billion in bonuses handed to 165,200 executives by Wall Street banks in 2013 would be enough to more than double the pay for all 1,085,000 Americans who work full-time at the current federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour.  Meanwhile, the majority of new jobs created since 2010 pay just $13.83 an hour or less, according to NELP.”

NYTimes: War Gear Flows to Police Departments


Democracy-NOW: Seattle’s Socialist City Council Member Kshama Sawant Hails Historic Vote for $15/Hour Minimum Wage - “Hi, I’m Rihanna Martinson. I am a worker at Target. I make about $9.61 an hour right now, and I work very, very hard for it. What 15 means is that workers like me are able to afford basic necessities. I mean, rising housing costs are only part of the problem. Things like health care, things like being able to afford new shoes before our shoes fall apart, able to go to the dentist if we get a cavity without worrying about it completely destroying our lives. I’m worried that my mother right now is getting old and she is going to work until the day she dies. And I want to be able to take care of her. And I don’t want to work until I die either. I would really like to be able to save money for retirement or even for something, if something happens to me so that I don’t end up on the street.”

US News: Bobby Jindal Signs Bill To Ban Lawsuits Against Oil & Gas Companies


Democracy-NOW: After Supreme Court Rejects Appeal, Will Obama Jail NYTimes Reporter James Risen? - Obama again out-Bushes Bush. Remember the Valerie Plame case?


NYTimes: Supreme Court Rejects Appeal From Times Reporter Over Refusal To Identify Source - This rule may be just as wrong and just as damaging as Citizens United. I guess the next step will be Obama putting Risen naked in solitary at Quantico for 8 months just as he did with C. Manning.

NYTimes: Seattle Approves $15 Minimum Wage, Setting a New Standard for Big Cities - Kshama Sawant. Remember that name.


Bill Moyers: Nobel Laureate Joseph E. Stiglitz: Let’s Stop Subsidizing Corporate and 1%’er Tax Dodgers“7 Takeaways.” His speech to the AFL-CIO.

Counter Punch: The Democrats’ New Fake Populism - Very insightful.


Common Dreams: Moms to EPA: End Monsanto’s Poisoning of America

AlterNet: Meet the Wealthy New Egomaniac Bankrolling the GOP - And the Dems love him to. He’s an MSNBC contributor.


EuroNews: Greek Surprise for Brussels - Take note of the Syriza party.


NYTimes: Officials Cast Wide Net in Monitoring Occupy Protests - More evidence of corporate/government collusion to prevent, subvert and squash Constitutionally protected free speech. This has been going on for years, and Here, coordinated directly through the White House, and Here. During a Houston demonstration, the FBI even had snipers on buildings with orders to shoot to kill if corporate interests were harmed.


Democracy-NOW: Koch Brothers Exposed: The Chilling New Documentary Republicans Don’t Want You To See - Here’s the actual film.


Socialist Alternative: Example of Why Electing “Progressive Democrats” Accomplishes Nothing - Basically they can never mobilize their real base while remaining within the party.


Common Dreams: Democratic FCC Commissioners Betray Net Neutrality Pledges

Time: Obama Backs Away From Net Neutrality Campaign Promises

Democracy-NOW: Walmart & Contractor Settle $21M Wage Theft Suit Days After Obama Praises Penny-Pinching Retailer


Democracy-NOW: Glenn Greenwald: US Corporate Media is Neutered, Impotent and Obsolete


NYTimes: Walmart Making Ends Meet - A bad year for Walmart shoppers. A bad year for Walmart shareholders. But a really great year for Walmart execs.


Common Dreams: Walmart Worker to Obama: ‘Help Us’ - BTW, Hillary is a Walmart board member.


Bill Moyers: What Happened to Obama’s Promise of Net Neutrality


ProPublica: Senate to Take Up Longshot Amendment to Regulate Campaign Finance

Common Dreams: ‘Money Is Not Speech’: Retired Justice Stevens Slams Dark Money Rulings - See entry of 4/21.

ProPublica: The Rise of Corporate Impunity - The one and only Wall St. exec ever prosecuted as a result of the 2007 meltdown.

Counter Punch: The Case of Mondragon - A working example of a worker-owned cooperative as a response to the corporate fascist model.


Democracy-NOW: Ralph Nader On The ‘Unstoppable’ Left-Right Coalition To Reverse Corporate Domination and Here

NYTimes: Pfizer Proposes Merger So It Can Move Overseas To Avoid Taxes - Result? You and I will pay more. Top execs of both companies will pocket millions.


NYTimes: Unlimited Koch Cash Comes to New York - “The problem is that the Supreme Court has explicitly said that buying influence is not corruption.”

Vice: Former Comcast and Verizon Attorneys Now Manage FCC And Are About to Kill the Internet

Democracy-NOW: Internet For The 1%: New FCC Rules Strike Down Net Neutrality


NYTimes: FCC, In A Shift, Backs Fast Lane for Web Traffic and Common Dreams and MoJo - This is a prime example of what Democrats say vs. what they do. Obama appointed Wheeler (a venture capitalist and former cable and wireless lobbyist) and both Obama and Wheeler have talked endlessly about net neutrality - but here’s what they actually do. Net neutrality in the USA is now officially dead. This is going to cause the internet to become more profitable for the big cable and wireless companies, but slower and more expensive for you and I. No Difference. Coming on the heals of the recent federal appeals court ruling, and the proposed merger (all but done) of Comcast and Time Warner, Americans currently have one of the slowest and lowest capacity national networks of any industrialized country in the world and it’s only going to get worse from here.

San Francisco Weekly: The Life of a Stolen Phone - Theft is a part of the smart phone business model. Both the manufacturers and the network providers want your phone to get stolen. Displaying your smartphone in public could cost you your life.


Socialist Alternative: A New Revolt Is Coming


NYTimes: Justice Stevens Suggests Solution for ‘Giant Step in the Wrong Direction’ - Regarding Citizens United, Stevens “questioned the majority’s attempt to recast a modest case into a blockbuster that would overrule major precedents and allow unlimited campaign spending by corporations and unions.” “Essentially,” he wrote, “five justices were unhappy with the limited nature of the case before us, so they changed the case to give themselves an opportunity to change the law.” Here is Stevens’ original dissent (1/21/10). New Yorker: Money Unlimited - How Justice John Roberts Orchestrated The Citizens United Decision.

Popular Resistance: Fighting For A Legitimate Democracy - Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it.” We have reached that point when the 1% plutocrats have gained control and caused the politicians to rule against the consent of the governed.

Bill Moyers: All Three Branches of Federal Government A Protection Racket for the 1%


The Hill: Obama Seeks Boost For TPP


Popular Resistance: New Network for Social Justice Unionism Seeks to Change the Labor Movement


AlterNet: Thom Hartmann: How America Killed Its Middle Class


Socialist Alternative: Bernie Sanders For President In 2016

Counter Punch: The Dubious Authority of the Whore Court - Very dubious. “To “respect” authority in the abuse of its power is to align oneself with and further enable that same abuse.” And to become complicit in its crime.


Common Dreams: Matt Taibbi: Why Corporate Criminals Don’t Pay and Democracy-NOW - An interesting short video lays it out. A kid with a joint in his pocket gets 47 days on Rikers Island. 1 oz. of coke will put you in jail for years; and more will put you in jail for life. But openly, blatantly and repeatedly help HSBC launder $ Millions in Mexican drug money? A fine of 5 weeks profit and the perps go to sleep in their own bed at night. JPMorgan rigging energy prices, boston whaling, and illegal mortgage fraud? 1 Qtr’s profit and home they go. What this kind of unequal justice ignores: 1. The individuals at the bank who participated could easily be prosecuted. 2. After the first offense, the banks could be made smaller so that next time it wouldn’t “threaten the financial industry” to prosecute them and 3. It morally unconscionable to have a two tier justice system, unless of course one is a sociopath.

AlterNet: Why The Rich Pay A Much Lower Tax Rate Than We Do

Common Dreams: Here’s One More Thing You Won’t See on MSNBC


Bill Moyers: Can’t We Just Say The Robert’s Court is Corrupt? - In which a disillusioned ex-Republican advisor concludes what I’ve been saying for years. We no longer have a Supreme Court, it should now be called the Whore Court.

Common Dreams: First Ever Scientific Study of the Question: Is The US A Democracy?: Nope - Study by Princeton and Northwestern Universities. It’s an oligarchy. “the preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy.” I would say plutocracy. A study in the Political Research Quarterly corroborates that conclusion. Democrats were actually less responsive to low income Americans and more responsive to the wealthy than Republicans.

NYTimes: Executive Pay Continues To Skyrocket - Time for a progressive income tax.

NYTimes: Citigroup Profits Exceed Forecasts


Popular Resistance: How to Start A Workers’ Co-operative


NYTimes: Franken’s Campaign Against Comcast - “We’ve got the biggest cable provider and biggest Internet provider, in Comcast, buying the second-biggest cable provider and third-largest Internet provider, and I’m very worried that will create a company that’s too big,” Mr. Franken said in the interview. “They’re going to use their position to leverage higher cable prices and to dictate a lot of things that will make for fewer choices, and their service will be even worse.” See entries of 2/13, 2/6.


Bill Moyers: From Occupy to City Hall: Meet the Woman Leading the Fight for $15 In Seattle

Halifax Media Co-op: Tactical Police Plan For Raid on Occupy - Once again government coordinates with corporate interests to stifle peaceful and legal protest. See entry of 2/13 for all the links.


AlterNet: 8 Facts The Three and Five Letter Networks Refuse to Talk About -

  1. 5. US Wealth Up $34 Trillion since recession, 93% of us got nothing.

  2. 2.8 Americans made more than 3.6 million minimum wage workers.

  3. 3.News sources speak only for the top 5%.

  4. 4.TV news gets dumbed down for Americans.

  5. 5.Top news execs are almost all white, male boomers who owe $trillions to society. The ‘self-made-man’ shit is a fantasy.

  6. 6.US funding for schools and pensions plummets as corporations cease paying taxes.

  7. 7.Most large corporations in the US pay no taxes here.

  8. 8. Restaurant servers have been without a raise for 30 years.

Revolution anyone?


FreeLancersUnion: The Quiet Revolution Is Here.

AlterNet: McCutcheon Is Our Rallying Cry - “The plutocrats fund the only two parties allowed to run for office and the people are manipulated by fear to vote against their interests in a mirage democracy of rigged elections.”


NYTimes: Corporate Profits Highest in 85 Years, Wages Lowest in 65


Democracy-NOW: Sen. Bernie Sanders Reacts to McCutcheon Decision - This decision only gives free speech to those who want to contribute over $125,000 (the previous limit). Freedom of Speech for Billionaires. Around 100 people nationwide, such as the Koch Bros. who are worth around $80 Billion. These people can now purchase whatever government they want. Nobody else counts in the political process anymore. This law is going to help these 100 or so people destroy Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Aid to Families with Dependent Children, Welfare, EPA regulations, the Dept. of Education, etc.

AlterNet: Arm Yourself. Read Breyers’ Dissent to the McCutcheon Decision - This short article contains the hightlights and a link to the entire decision, in which the dissent begins on page 52.

WSJ: Highlights From Justice Breyers’ Dissent - There are no more viable laws in the US concerning campaign finance, and for that reason our government has become completely illegitimate.


NYTimes: Whore Court Strikes Down All Contribution Limits - All in the name of “free speech.” What a joke. The Koch Bros. have free speech, but nobody else.

UK Guardian: I Stood Up To The Supreme Court. It Just Struck Down Democracy. What Now? - Positions on both sides are becoming hardened. A recipe for insurrection.

Truth Out: Homeland Security Study Praises Occupy Sandy


Common Dreams: Moody’s: Corporations Hoarding $1 Trillion Overseas


Common Dreams: World Bank Accused of Destroying Traditional Farming in Favor of Corporate Land Grabs


International Business Times: For the First Time, Walmart Admits Its Dependance on Food Stamps, and ‘Other Public Assistance Programs’ As Essential To Its Bottom Line - Why pay your labor a living wage, when the US taxpayers are happy to chip in, in order to bolster your profits?

The Villager: Occupy Protestor Who Was Groped By NYPD Goes on Trial - NY no longer has a police department or court system. They have been transformed into one big security detail for Wall St. Banks, ever since 2010 when JP Morgan donated $4.6 Million to the New York Police Foundation. The whoring court system becomes complicit by denying her lawyer access to the offending police officer’s performance record.


Common Dreams: Hobby Lobby and the Profoundly Dangerous Precedent for Women’s Rights - This company wants to deny certain forms of women’s health care, because it is against the beliefs of the store owners. The Whore Court will decide as it always does, in favor of the corporations over the people. Next they’ll want to deny family planning education and all forms of birth control. Then they’ll tell their employees that they just need to practice abstinence. Then it’ll be liver scans for all of us ‘no good alcoholics’ and lung x-rays for all of us that continue to smoke, and on and on - you get the picture. Check out this short video. Oh, btw, this wouldn’t be happening with Single Payer - so it’s just one more little gift to the people from the Rethugs and the Dems.

Truth Out: Half of America In or Near Poverty

Bill Moyers: Have We Forgotten the Lessons of the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire?


Denver Post: Occupy Protestors Gather Outside Home of CEO of Anti-Homeless League

The Atlantic: Hiding the Poor: Cities With the Most Segregated Poor - From 1970 to 2009, the proportion of poor families living in poor neighborhoods has more than doubled. Total class warfare. Poor neighborhoods face not only a lack of economic resources, but higher crime rates, higher dropout rates, higher rates of infant mortality and chronic disease, shorter lifespans, lack of access to jobs and job networks, poorer quality schools, stigmatization, ‘moral cynicism,’ and a multigenerational cycle of decline. Other trends from 1970 to 2009? More regressive taxation, offshoring of skilled labor, declining national expenditures for public schools, infrastructure, public transportation, increasing costs of post-secondary education and health care. The 1% are winning.


Houston Mint Press: FBI Continues to Withhold Info on Occupy Assassination Plots

Counter Punch: The NAFTA Scorecard - It’s a lose-lose-lose for working people in US, Canada and Mexico.

Albany, NY Times Union: Protestors Arrested Amid State Budget Talks

Common Dreams: Students and Faculty Occupy University of Southern Maine


AlterNet: More Americans Killed By Police Than By Terrorists


Alternet: Populism Is Growing - We are in the early stages of the birth of a people’s mass movement. The comments on this article are also interesting. I’m reminded of a 2010 article by the director of Academy Award winning documentary ‘Inside Job.’ While the American people should be organizing in support of income equality, a progressive tax structure, campaign finance reform, universal healthcare, public affordable post-secondary education, rebuilding physical infrastructure, keeping broadband infrastructure at least equal to that of the rest of the world, banking reform and making banks and banksters accountable for their actions, instead the two party system keeps us fighting over abortion, gay marriage, gun control. From an economic point of view, full employment (generally accepted to be 4.5% unemployment - mostly people between jobs) puts upward pressure on wages, which narrows corporate profit margins. It also gives labor more power in the marketplace and in politics. For this reason, the 1% want to keep unemployment as high as possible for as long as possible.


Maine Green Party: 2014 Brings Most Green Candidates Since 2004


Occupy: 2013 Wall Street Bonuses Exceeded All Minimum Wage Workers’ Pay Combined


Popular Resistance: Capitalism’s End Game


Free Press: Why The Comcast-Netflix Deal Should Worry All Americans - Seen entries of 2/6, 2/13, 2/19, 2/20.


Bill Moyers: The Deep State Hiding in Plain Sight - Best 26 min. video ever.

Bill Moyers: Resisting the Neoliberal Revolution - Bill Moyers’ follow-on interview to Deep State.

Democracy-NOW: Silencing the Scientist Targeted by Herbicide Firm Syngenta - For more on this issue, rent the film ‘Flow: For The Love of Water.’


NYTimes: Comcast’s Web of Lobbying - ‘World War III’ begins. See entry of 2/19.

HuffPo: Boeing Paid No Federal Tax For 2013 - Received $82 Million refund on profits of $5.9 Billion.


NYTimes: FCC Seeks A New Path On Net Neutrality Rules - I certainly commend the FCC for trying, but the power still lies with Comcast, Verizon and AT&T. Michael Powell, current head of the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (and son of former Sec. of State Colin Powell), has stated that if the FCC does this, it will mean “World War III.” The NCTA wields enormous political power through its flagrant use of campaign donations and gifts to politicians. The next step will be for it to attempt to choke off all funding for FCC enforcement, while it fights each FCC investigation and ruling. ISPs are utilities and should be regulated as such. In other countries it works that way and their citizens pay about 1/5 what we do for 20X better/faster service.

NBC News: Why Taxpayers Will Bail Out The Rich When the Next Storm Hits


Republic Report: Obama Admin’s TPP Trade Officials Received Hefty Bonuses From Big Banks and RT News


Popular Resistance: Strategy for Deglobalization


Reality Check: Why the Campaign Against Conservative Judicial Nominees Like Michael Boggs Matters - Bottom line: A Dem chairman (Patrick Leahy) of the Dem-controlled Senate Judiciary Committee clings to the old tradition of allowing home-state senators to black ball judicial nominees, despite the recent ‘victory’ the Dems claimed in overturning parts of the filibuster rule - specifically the part that allows an up or down vote of judicial nominee. Put another way, old tradition is more important to the Dems than women’s reproductive rights. And yet there are still those that cling to the notion that there’s a difference in the two major parties.

UK Guardian: Comcast Takeover of Time Warner Will ‘Throttle Choice on the Web’

HuffPo: This Is What the Comcast-Time Warner Deal Does To Cable TV

NYTimes: For Comcast, Daring Deals To Expand Its Reach - Further consolidation in the broadband industry can only be bad for consumers. This makes the recent Fresh Air interview even more timely - and it deserves another listen. See entry below of 2/6. The divide between Americans who can afford large bandwidth and those who can’t gets even larger. The divide between America and other countries who provide it as a public service also grows wider. We are moving into a dark age with respect to online information.

Popular Resistance: American Petroleum Institute Spies on Environmentalists - Just another in the long list of ongoing instances where corporate Amerika in coordination with the Obama Admin and Here and Here and Here and Here and Here has significantly ramped up their spying activities and their collusion and violated the Constitutional rights of law-abiding Americans, preemptively beating them, even training snipers on them, bringing down overbearing force on those who would reveal these acts, and throwing them in jail before any protest activities have even begun.


Council of Canadians: Legislators From Seven Countries Call For Release of TPP Text


Salon: “To Get To The Gold, They Will Have to Kill Every One of Us.” - If you’ve ever seen the movie Avatar, it was about this country (Ecuador) and this struggle.

Think Progress: Occupy Activist Charged with Elbowing Policeman Who Was Groping Her From Behind, And Then Beat Her Unconscious Faces 7 Years In Prison

Common Dreams: How Entitlements For the Rich Cheat the Rest of Us

Truthdig: Robert Reich: Why What’s Bad for Main Street Is What’s Good For Wall Street


RevNews: Madrid Demonstration Against State Repression Leads to More State Repression

HuffPo: Beef Recall: Rancho Feedlots Recalls A Year’s Worth of Beef


Alternet: People-Powered Media Mobilizes Masses While Mass Media Remains Silent - Contains a great run down of alternate media sites.


Common Dreams: As TPP Opposition Soars, Mainstream Media Blackout Deafening - See entry of 1/29, below. And isn’t that a true testament to the power of the people and independent media? Both TPP and TPA (Fast Track) may be dead even though the corporate media did its best to keep it quiet and slip it past the American public.

Fresh Air: When It Comes to High-Speed Internet, the US Is Falling Way Behind - A clear and concise explanation of the recent DC Appeals Court decision that allows large carriers, like Verizon, to slow down and even block sites they don’t want you to see. The large carriers are now basic monopolies and are not adopting the latest technology for quickly moving large amounts of information. As a result not only are we on the verge of being restricted in content that we can receive, even that content will be delivered slowly and at greater cost relative to other countries, like S. Korea, that have adopted new innovation.


Washington Post: A Rare Look Inside the Koch Political Empire


Forward Progressives: Meet The Employee-Owned That Could Eventually Take Down WalMart


NYTimes: Law Doesn’t End Revolving Door on Capital Hill - Both major parties are now completely and totally corrupt criminal enterprises.


APTN: Keystone XL ‘Black Snake’ Pipeline to Face ‘Epic’ Opposition From Native American Alliance

Common Dreams: An Austerity Storm Hammers Georgia


DC Media Group: State of the Union Protest: “NAFTA on Steroids” TPP No Solution to Wealth Inequality


Counter Punch: SOTU: Obama Discovers Income Inequality

NYTimes: Capitalism vs Democracy - New book, called by the World Bank’s head of research “one of the watershed books in economic thinking,” states that capitalism undermines democracy by creating wide disparities in income and class. Contrary to current thinking, ‘the free market liberated from the distorting effects of government intervention’ is the enemy of the people.

HuffPo: W Va Chemical Spill Worse Than Initially Reported


Shareable.Net: Cooperatives May Increase Worker Life Expectancy


Truthdig: America’s Biggest Crisis: The Economy is Rigged for the Wealthiest


NYTimes: The Koch Party

Politico: Koch World 2014


Common Dreams: The Global Elite: Rigging the Rules That Fuel Inequality - New report from Oxfam states that 85 of the world’s richest people own the wealth of half the world’s population.

International Society for Ecology and Culture: Davos: Peeling Back the Veneer - “A platform for human rights abusers, political racketeers, property thieves, and international environmental criminals”


Counter Punch: Remembering the Officially Deleted Dr. King

NYTimes: A Loophole Allows Lawmakers to Reel in Trips and Donations


Counter Punch: TPP and the Chamber of Horrors - NAFTA on Steroids

Popular Resistance: Environmental TPP Chapter Leaked and Common Dreams - Sierra Club Exec. Director: “If the environment chapter is finalized as written in this leaked document, President Obama’s environmental trade record would be worse than George W. Bush’s. This draft chapter falls flat on every single one of our issues – oceans, fish, wildlife, and forest protections – and in fact, rolls back on the progress made in past free trade pacts.”


Reuters: US Appeals Court Strikes Down Net Neutrality - Verizon strikes again.

Esquire: Today, A Federal Appeals Court Killed Free Speech on the Internet


Common Dreams: Whore Court Sides With Monsanto Again


Truth Out: The Political Economy of Predatory Capitalism

Counter Punch: Obama’s Corporate Plantations

Common Dreams: Four Days On, Chemical Spill Consuming W. Virginia

NBC News: Report: Millions of Women At Risk For Falling Into Poverty, Economic Ruin - Low-income, working women are affected disproportionately by economic downturn.


Truthdig: After 20 Years, NAFTA Leaves Mexico’s Economy in Ruins - America’s mono-culture, subsidized corn hit the Mexican market, driving millions of small farmers - along with their heirloom seeds - out of business and off the farm. US corps opened low-wage factories at the expense of unions and the environment. This drove waves of immigration north. Corporate profits soared. The US lost a net 1 million factory jobs to Mexico, and ran up a $181 Billion trade deficit with Canada and Mexico. $360 Million has been paid to multi-national corporations in the form of  “investor-state” tribunal attacks and $12.4 Billion is pending under such claims. And you think NAFTA’s bad? Just wait till Obama gets TPP ‘fast-tracked.’

Reuters: US Lawmakers Propose Fast-Track For TPP - No sooner said than done. What the people want is not even a consideration.

Common Dreams: Noam Chomsky: US Domestic Policy In Two Words: ‘Pure Savagery’ - Cuts to food stamps and jobless benefits are examples of the neo-liberal assault on the America People.


NYTimes: Stealing J. Edgar Hoover’s Secrets - An historical video account of a 1971 incident wherein several anti-war activists broke into an FBI office and stole a trove of documents that described COINTELPRO, how the FBI was spying on Americans, infiltrating the anti-war left, disrupting its activities, blackmailing and using violence against, and preemptively arresting student leaders on trumped up charges, and how the FBI coordinated letter carriers, local police, campus security officers and switchboard operators into a nationwide, illegal spying operation. Back then it was front page news and caused intense citizen backlash. The Nixon administration contacted the media and requested they not publish because it would ‘threaten national security’ and ‘endanger lives.’ Sound familiar? The media paid no attention and published the complete story. Today the exact same thing goes on and Here and Here and Here and Here and Here and Here, but the media does exactly what the Bush/Obama administrations tell it to do, and Americans apparently could not care less. What’s amazing is how little the average American citizen cares about the Constitution today compared to how much they cared in 1971. Back then there were so many anti-war activists that the burglars - whose descriptions were known - could melt into a much larger group. Not so today.

Open Secrets: A Cartological Guide to the Koch Network

Common Dreams: Study: Polarization and Gridlock Work Well for the Very Wealthy


Popular Resistance: Polls Show That A Supermajority of Americans Stand Behind Occupy and the Green Party’s “15 Core Issues” and Here


RT News: 900 Wealthiest Americans Exempted From Paying Into Social Security after Jan. 2nd - Remove this ‘cap’ and Social Security will be completely funded for as long as any reasonable prediction can be made.

Washington Post: Koch-Backed Political Network, Designed to Shield Donors, Raises $400 Million in 2012


NYTimes: Mapping Poverty in America


Eugene Weekly: Secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership Revealed - Congressmen can look at the document but they have to make an appointment, have no staff present, take no notes on what they find and they cannot talk about the contents of the document to anyone else. Any bill with those rules can’t be good. And do I need to even mention that this flies directly in the face of Obama’s pledges to open up the political process? A good, 8 paragraph article that covers the basic evils of this trade pact.

Corporate Domination 2nd Half 2013

Forget about income and wealth inequality, corporate tax welfare, defunding public education, crumbling American infrastructure, the lack of difference between the only 2 major neo-liberal parties that we’ll ever get a chance to vote for, the dysfunctional health care delivery system, drone murders, perpetual war. Just focus on what’s  

               REALLY SCARY RIGHT NOW!!!!!

Whether the concern is climate, labor, finance, war, food/water shortage, environmental destruction, lack of adequate/equal health care, the root cause is the same: unregulated, out of control capitalism. It’s not working and it keeps getting worse by the day.