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  1. #71
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    This makes me sick. You have a bunch of talking heads and imbeciles on capitol hill that simply know how to feed propaganda to bigger imbeciles think they know better than the former CEO of Goldman Sachs?!

    I trust Hank Paulson a hell of a lot more than I trust Hank Paulson with his decisions diluted by a bunch of idiots!

    All politicians should just SHUT UP and let the man do his work. Because as Jim Cramer said about the politicians before:

    THEY KNOW NOTHING!

    I don't care if you're a democrat or a republican. Now is NOT the time to have a political pissing contest! In this case, I fully agree that what Hank Paulson says...

    GOES.

    To me, to think those politicians think they know economics better than Hank Paulson is a JOKE.

    Seriously, I'm a lot more comfortable with an Emperor Paulsontine and his trusted council than I am with officials elected by rednecks making the economic decisions in this country.
    I am an ENTJ. I hate political correctness but love smart people ^_^

  2. #72
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    Default Sarah Palin: A Trojan Moose Concealing Four More Years of George Bush

    Did Sarah Palin wrongfully push to have her ex-brother-in law fired? Was she really against the "Bridge to Nowhere?" Did she really sell Alaska's plane on eBay, or just list it on eBay? Did she actually have any substantial duties commanding the Alaska National Guard? The correct answer to all these questions is: who cares? Which isn't to say these aren't valid questions, or that Palin and the McCain camp aren't playing it fast, loose, and coy with each of them. The point is that Palin, and the circus she's brought to town, are simply a bountiful collection of small lies deliberately designed to distract the country from one big truth: the havoc that George Bush and the Republican Party have wrought, and that John McCain is committed to continuing. Every second of this campaign not spent talking about the Republican Party's record, and John McCain's role in that record, is a victory for John McCain.

    Her critics like to say that Palin hasn't accomplished anything. I disagree: in the space of 10 days she's succeeded in distracting the entire country from the horrific Bush record -- and McCain's complicity in it. My friends, that's accomplishment we can believe in. Just look at the problem John McCain faced. George Bush has a disastrous record, and the country knows it. John McCain -- the current one, not the one who vanished eight years ago -- has no major disagreements with George Bush (and I'm sorry, wanting to fire Donald Rumsfeld a bit sooner doesn't qualify) and wants to continue his incredibly unpopular policies for another four years. The solution? Enter Sarah Palin, a Trojan Moose carrying 4 more years of disaster.

    And the plan has worked beautifully. Just look at what's being discussed just 57 days before the election. Is it the highest unemployment rate in 5 years? The bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac? The suicide bombing yesterday in Iraq that killed 6 people and wounded 54 -- in the same market where last month a bomb killed 28 people and wounded 72? That the political reconciliation that was supposedly the point of "the surge" is nowhere near happening? That Iraq's Shiite government is now rounding up the American-backed Sunni leaders of the Awakening? That the reason 8,000 soldiers may be leaving Iraq soon is so more can be deployed to Afghanistan where the Taliban is steadily retaking the country? No. We're talking about whether Sarah Palin was or was not a good mayor, whether she was or was not a good mother, whether her skirts are too short and her zingers too sarcastic.

    Contrary to what we're hearing 24/7 in the media, the next few weeks are not a test of Sarah Palin. The next few weeks are a test of Barack Obama. He needs to dramatically redirect this election back to a discussion over the issues that really matter -- the issues that will impact the future of this country. A presidential campaign is a battle and this is the time for Obama to show some commander-in-chief skills. I'm not talking about calling Palin out for lying about his record and demeaning community organizing. I'm talking about grabbing the political debate by the throat. The country is already angry about what's happened over the last 7+ years -- he shouldn't be afraid to give voice to that anger.

    Obama has spent years adopting a non-threatening persona; but he can't let his fear that appearing like an "angry Black man" (a stereotype not-too-subtly fueled by Fox News) will turn off swing voters keep him from channeling the disgust and outrage felt by so many voters --swing and otherwise. McCain's team, in an effort to distract, is going to keep doing what they're doing -- diverting voters and the media with a tantalizing combination of personal trivia and small lies. It doesn't matter if they're caught in them -- in fact, all the better. Because they know there is no way in hell they can win if this election is about the big truth of the Bush years. McCain's real running mate is George Bush and the failed policies of the Republican Party. Even if they are dressed up in a skirt, lipstick, and Tina Fey glasses.

    Arianna Huffington: Sarah Palin: A Trojan Moose Concealing Four More Years of George Bush

  3. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by groupie View Post

    Did Sarah Palin wrongfully push to have her ex-brother-in law fired? Was she really against the "Bridge to Nowhere?" Did she really sell Alaska's plane on eBay, or just list it on eBay? Did she actually have any substantial duties commanding the Alaska National Guard? The correct answer to all these questions is: who cares? Which isn't to say these aren't valid questions, or that Palin and the McCain camp aren't playing it fast, loose, and coy with each of them. The point is that Palin, and the circus she's brought to town, are simply a bountiful collection of small lies deliberately designed to distract the country from one big truth: the havoc that George Bush and the Republican Party have wrought, and that John McCain is committed to continuing. Every second of this campaign not spent talking about the Republican Party's record, and John McCain's role in that record, is a victory for John McCain.

    Her critics like to say that Palin hasn't accomplished anything. I disagree: in the space of 10 days she's succeeded in distracting the entire country from the horrific Bush record -- and McCain's complicity in it. My friends, that's accomplishment we can believe in. Just look at the problem John McCain faced. George Bush has a disastrous record, and the country knows it. John McCain -- the current one, not the one who vanished eight years ago -- has no major disagreements with George Bush (and I'm sorry, wanting to fire Donald Rumsfeld a bit sooner doesn't qualify) and wants to continue his incredibly unpopular policies for another four years. The solution? Enter Sarah Palin, a Trojan Moose carrying 4 more years of disaster.

    And the plan has worked beautifully. Just look at what's being discussed just 57 days before the election. Is it the highest unemployment rate in 5 years? The bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac? The suicide bombing yesterday in Iraq that killed 6 people and wounded 54 -- in the same market where last month a bomb killed 28 people and wounded 72? That the political reconciliation that was supposedly the point of "the surge" is nowhere near happening? That Iraq's Shiite government is now rounding up the American-backed Sunni leaders of the Awakening? That the reason 8,000 soldiers may be leaving Iraq soon is so more can be deployed to Afghanistan where the Taliban is steadily retaking the country? No. We're talking about whether Sarah Palin was or was not a good mayor, whether she was or was not a good mother, whether her skirts are too short and her zingers too sarcastic.

    Contrary to what we're hearing 24/7 in the media, the next few weeks are not a test of Sarah Palin. The next few weeks are a test of Barack Obama. He needs to dramatically redirect this election back to a discussion over the issues that really matter -- the issues that will impact the future of this country. A presidential campaign is a battle and this is the time for Obama to show some commander-in-chief skills. I'm not talking about calling Palin out for lying about his record and demeaning community organizing. I'm talking about grabbing the political debate by the throat. The country is already angry about what's happened over the last 7+ years -- he shouldn't be afraid to give voice to that anger.

    Obama has spent years adopting a non-threatening persona; but he can't let his fear that appearing like an "angry Black man" (a stereotype not-too-subtly fueled by Fox News) will turn off swing voters keep him from channeling the disgust and outrage felt by so many voters --swing and otherwise. McCain's team, in an effort to distract, is going to keep doing what they're doing -- diverting voters and the media with a tantalizing combination of personal trivia and small lies. It doesn't matter if they're caught in them -- in fact, all the better. Because they know there is no way in hell they can win if this election is about the big truth of the Bush years. McCain's real running mate is George Bush and the failed policies of the Republican Party. Even if they are dressed up in a skirt lipstick and Tina Fey glasses.

    Arianna Huffington: Sarah Palin: A Trojan Moose Concealing Four More Years of George Bush
    Sarah Palin: Maverick to Nowhere - Video

  4. #74
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    Default A travesty of democracy

    Democrats, Republicans conspire to remove Wall Street bailout from election campaign

    Closed-door talks continued throughout the day Friday between congressional Democratic and Republican leaders and the Bush administration, with all sides pledging to reach agreement on terms of a $700 billion bailout package for the US financial system before the Asian stock markets open Monday morning Sunday afternoon in the US. Both parties agree on one fundamental principle: The American people will have no say whatsoever in an arrangement that will compel them to pay for the losses of bankers and speculators who created the financial disaster. That is the content of the demand on all sides that "politics" be kept out of the bailout talks.

    Democrats were particularly insistent on this question. Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama said after Thursday's meeting at the White House blew up in acrimony, "When you inject presidential politics into delicate negotiations, it's not necessarily as helpful as it needs to be." Congressional Democratic leaders followed suit. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said, "The insertion of presidential politics has not been helpful." His deputy, Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois, added, "Bringing the presidential political campaigns to the halls of Congress is not going to make this any easier." This is the same argument made by some of the same Democrats in October 2002, when they rushed through a vote authorizing the use of military force against Iraq only weeks before the congressional elections, to avoid having the elections become a referendum on the Bush administration's drive to war.

    If America were a democracy in any meaningful sense of the term, it would be considered obligatory to have a full discussion and debate in the course of an election campaign over plans to raid the federal treasury and mortgage future generations to guarantee the riches of the financial elite. But if the bailout were on the ballot November 4, the voters would repudiate it overwhelmingly. It is precisely because of this opposition that the conspirators of both parties sought to reach an agreement this weekend, preempting the issue and depriving the American public of any say in a decision that will profoundly affect the future course of the country.

  5. #75
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    Bipartisanship is an interesting concept. It's one of those respected sorts of things politicians like to tout. However, recent national developments are convincing me, traditionally a supporter of bipartisanship, that the concept in practice might not be so good after all. The two developments are the presidential debate and the economic bailout proposal. They are interrelated. Saturday's debate was extremely dry and a little pointless. John McCain, who bragged at least twice about not being his party's Miss Congeniality and has often focused on his own bipartisan tendencies, refused to look at Barack Obama throughout most of the debate despite moderator Jim Lehrer's incessant begging for a head-to-head wrestling match.

    But there were drier aspects of the debate other than McCain. Let's take a look at each candidate's stances expressed during the event, and you will probably see my point. McCain wants to chase Osama bin Laden to the gates of hell. Obama wants to do the same thing but says he won't funnel billions of dollars to Pakistan to do it. McCain says Russia is in the wrong for using military force in Ossetia. Obama believes the same thing but says he would look into the Russian prime minister's eyes differently than McCain would. I guess you could say Obama and McCain are fairly bipartisan. They seem to agree on many issues, spurring independents to say there is not really a difference between the two major parties.

    Of course, the economic bailout package, which was discussed at Saturday's debate before being rejected Monday by the House, illustrates the independent sentiment quite well. Both McCain, whose party in the House has now voted against the package, and Obama showed support for the $700 billion bailout of Wall Street. As much as McCain claims to be for lowering taxes and deregulating the market, which he said was a "fundamental difference" he has with his opponent, his support for this bill totally undermines his claims. How can a politician support deregulating the economy and at the same time throw $700 billion at a problem? I'm tired of presidential candidates who lose their principles in order to save their images, whether in choosing a running mate or voting however it takes to get swing votes.

    When it comes to the so-called "rescue bill," I agree with Dick Cheney when he said in a 2007 Fortune article: "The fact is, the markets work, and they are working. And people - some of the big companies obviously - have taken risks. Risk means risk. And there's an upside as well as a downside in some of the choices they've made. We have to be careful not to have this set of developments lead us to significantly expand the role of government in ways that may do damage long-term for the economy." Unfortunately, Cheney no longer shares this opinion. The administration, along with a number of other Republicans and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, has tried to scare lawmakers into voting for the bailout. Supporters of the bill are fond of saying it will be the end of the world if the bill isn't passed. "Like the Iraq war and Patriot Act, this bill is fueled by fear and haste," said Rep. Lloyd Doggett, D-Texas, according to a CNNMoney article. The bailout has been lauded by its supporters as being a bipartisan effort to save the world. In the end, it shows where the hearts of many of our lawmakers are (with Wall Street) and is being used to cast opposing parties in a bad light before an election month.

    Bailout, debate shame idea of bipartisanship - Opinion

  6. #76
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    Default Senate Passes The Bailout Bill

    In one indication of the attitude of the congressional leadership to the public, the computer servers that route e-mail traffic to the web sites of individual congressmen were shut down on the pretext that they were overwhelmed by the high volume of traffic with the result that constituents were no longer able to send e-mails opposing the bailout.



    Obama backs the bailout

    The most politically significant feature of the Senate debate on the bailout Wednesday was the speech delivered by Obama, reiterating his support for the bill. Obama said that now was not the time to pinpoint causes or assign blame for the crisis, comparing it to a house fire, where the community must come together to put out the blaze before determining what caused it. The metaphor was an exceptionally poor one, given that the bill provides no relief at all for the millions of homeowners facing foreclosure, while giving a bounty to the Wall Street arsonists.

    Obama said that once the bailout had been approved, it would be necessary to rescue families "on Main Street" who were having trouble paying their bills because of rising unemployment, gas prices, health care costs, etc. But HE DID NOT EXPLAIN THE PRIORITY: why the needs of the billionaires on Wall Street were so much more urgent than those of the unemployed, low-paid, uninsured and those facing foreclosure and eviction. Moreover, as he well knows, the allocation of what will likely amount to more than a trillion dollars in public funds to absorb part of Wall Street's losses will bankrupt the federal government. One reason he and the Democratic leadership as a whole are pushing to pass the bailout measure before the election is so that after Election Day, should he win, he will be able to declare that his "hands are tied" and he has no choice but to repudiate his campaign promises and adopt austerity measures.

    The Democratic candidate warned that passage of the bailout was needed to "prevent the crisis from turning into a catastrophe," adding, "We can't afford to take the risk that the worldwide economy could be plunged into a very deep hole." In reality, the bailout will not resolve what is a systemic crisis of the capitalist system or prevent it from enveloping millions of working people in the US and around the world. The most powerful sections of the US financial elite are utilizing the crisis as an opportunity to offload their bad debts onto the government and impose the burden of the financial meltdown, for which they are responsible, on the working class. There is already much commentary in the media and among economists to the effect that this bailout is little more than a stop-gap, and even greater transfers of wealth to Wall Street will be required.

    Obama admitted, "Even if we get this in place, we could still have enormous problems and probably will have enormous problems over the next few months and potentially longer." In a speech earlier in the day in La Crosse, Wisconsin, Obama fostered illusions in the bailout, telling his audience, "This is not a plan to just hand over $700 billion of your money to a few banks. If this is managed correctly, we will hopefully get most or all of our money back we might even turn a profit on the government's investment every penny of which will go directly back to you, the investor." Such lies only underscore the fundamental political reality of the 2008 campaign: The working class has no choice between Obama and McCain, both of whom are proven defenders of corporate America. Obama is emerging at this point as the more likely victor in the election, not by proposing any program to defend the interests of the vast majority of the American people, but by presenting himself to big business as a more consistent and effective defender of the interests of the American ruling elite.

  7. #77
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    Default Chrysler 1979: Lessons from an early corporate "bailout"

    In 1979, Chrysler Corporation, the third largest US automaker, hovered on the verge of collapse, a victim of sharply declining revenue and cash-on-hand that had reached the level of threatening daily operations. In August 1979, Jimmy Carter's Treasury Secretary, G. William Miller, proposed a government intervention in the form of $1.5 billion in guaranteed loans. The sum was considered an astonishing total. It was by far the largest government bailout in US history. On September 7, 1979 Chrysler formally petitioned the US government for the loans, and on December 20, 1979 Congress ratified the appropriation in the "Chrysler Corporation Loan Guarantee Act," which Carter subsequently signed into law. The loans stipulated major concessions from Chrysler's workers, represented by the United Autoworkers Union (UAW). The political and media elite had successfully shifted blame for the corporation's collapse and by extension the overall decline of US capitalism onto the working class. The UAW and the AFL-CIO buckled to the concession demands, a capitulation that cleared the path for an onslaught on working class living standards that has continued to this day.

    There were profound pressures at play in the near-bankruptcy of Chrysler. The reemergence of the US's capitalist rivals, especially Japan and Germany, was felt keenly in the auto industry through declining market share. Even the more immediate cause of Chrysler's demise the oil shocks of the 1970s that reduced demand for the large and inefficient vehicles that had been Chrysler's stock-in-trade testified to the declining influence of the US, which was reflected in its inability to dictate production quotas to the oil states. Now, in the midst of the proposed bailout of the entire US financial industry, the experience of Chrysler in 1979 holds critical lessons for the working class. The Chrysler bailout set in motion processes that have only intensified to this day. First, the working class would henceforth have to foot the bill for the decline of US capitalism through its own impoverishment, carried out in the name of "competitiveness." Second, the corporate and financial elite, who bore primary responsibility for this decline, would henceforth reap windfall profits not only in spite of this decline, but precisely because of it.

    These processes found embodiment in Chrysler CEO Lee Iacocca, who soon after the bailout was making millions of dollars, even as he ruthlessly axed tens of thousands of jobs. A special place of shame must be given to the national media and political elite. In 1979 they raised a hue and cry about the need for Chrysler's workers to "sacrifice" and extolled the virtues of the free market. Today they offer few such sermons to the financial elite responsible for the current crisis. But they continue to insist, as they did in the days of the Chrysler bailout, that the working class must pay the bills for the failures of American capitalism. The working class is being asked to fork over trillions of dollars the sum would have been unfathomable in 1979 to bail out a criminal financial aristocracy that has bankrupted American capitalism, and very nearly the state itself.

    Lessons from history

    The 1979 Chrysler bailout was a significant turning point in US history. Chrysler had been a major and iconic presence of US industry for decades. Its collapse was a milepost in the long-term decline of US capitalism, which had resulted from the reemergence of major capitalist rivals and the enormous quantities the US spent on its military and related industries. The reemergence of Europe and Japan was the outcome of long processes that had been set in motion much earlier, when in the wake of World War II US capitalism as a means of forestalling world revolution rebuilt its major rivals. At the helm of Chrysler stood Lee Iacocca, the human embodiment of another new historical process: the celebrity CEO whose personal wealth and prestige grows in inverse proportion to the decline of the corporation that he nominally represents. At the helm of the country was the Democratic Party, which controlled the presidency and Congress. In the bailout, the Democrats joined with the Republicans in isolating the UAW. In so doing, they distanced themselves from the limited reformist agenda that the party had championed between the 1930s and 1960s. Since the 1970s the Democratic Party has been an equal partner with the Republicans in the steady rollback of the social gains and democratic rights won by the working class in the preceding decades.

    Finally, the capitulation of the UAW and the AFL-CIO without a fight in order to "save jobs" gave the green light to what has been a 3-decades-long assault on the living standards of the working class. The UAW's plan to "save jobs" has failed miserably hundreds of thousands of auto jobs have been wiped out since 1979 but much like Iacocca and the managerial elite, the bureaucracy has prospered in spite of its pitiful track record. The Chrysler concessions were a major step toward the open conversion of the bureaucracy into a profit-making enterprise, a process that has come to full fruition in the UAW's recent ascension to the management of the auto industry's enormous health care liabilities. Who is to pay for the breakdown of the capitalist profit system, the working class or big business? The answer of big business, the banks, the Democrats, the Carter administration and the UAW bureaucracy was, of course, the working class."

  8. #78
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    Wow, there is a whole lot of BS in that post, blanket. I don't know where to start. Other than the fact that the government never should have bailed out Chrysler, everything else is totally false.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  9. #79
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    Default Well, I think I'm with Palin on this one...


    Joe Biden and Sarah Palin traded barbs

    Sarah Palin stared criticism straight in the face Thursday, telling opponent Joe Biden and moderator Gwen Ifill that she would answer questions and address issues on her own terms during the vice presidential debate. "I may not answer the question the way you want to hear, but I'll talk straight to the American people and let them know my track record," Palin said. The Alaska governor, who repeatedly sought to emphasize the maverick credentials of the McCain-Palin ticket, overcame expectations, as 84 percent of the debate watchers said she did better than expected.

    In any event, for Palin, a tie is a win!

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