Tuesday, January 26, 2016

SAR #16026

There can be no great accumulation of wealth without exploitation.
Futility: For years, decades even, the US citizenry has become ever more reluctant to waste time following politics and trudging off to pull a lever for toady R or toady D, having long since figured out that if democracy comes down to chosing between the power elite's two nominees, then democracy is a hoax. Along comes Bernie Sanders, who seems to think government by and for the people might be a workable idea, and that a bit more government paid for by tapping the rich for by reverting to Eisenhower-era tax rates might be a workable idea. Those who haven't seen any point to voting are beginning to pay attention.
Say Amen: The easiest thing you can do to lose weight: avoid restaurants.
The Longer View: Some don't understand how “lower oil prices can cause a recession?” That's because they are too tightly focused on the here and now to see the operative cause and effect. The recession was not caused by low oil prices, but by the high ones before the credit crash. Only creating ever more credit (going consuming more and more of our tomorrows) made the high priced, end-of-the-oil-era oil possible. The recession that followed the credit crash (and that has been papered over, rather poorly, by QE etc. but still persists) caused the low oil prices. The lack of demand comes from our overwhelming debts. Take a longer view of things.
Lost and Found: The contest between Hillary and Bernie is not really about who gets to live in the White House, but whose White House it is. Will the Democrats continue their slide into useless me-tooism as the right of center standard bearer for polite Republicans, or will the party of the people actually once again become the party of the people? Will Sanders' campaign for a more equal and secure economy based on a stronger democracy build networks of activists across constituencies and across the country? Will the campaign create a lasting movement that people will commit to and keep working at and towards, even if the initial effort loses to Wall Street? Stay tuned.
Twilight Time? Saudi Aramco's chairman flatly rejects any suggestion that a possible initial public offering for as-yet unidentified parts of the company would include Saudi oil reserves. Mainly because if it did they would have to open their books for an independent verification of their claimed reserves, something which they will never permit – mainly because most of their claimed reserves are unlikely to exist.
Duck and Cover: Records of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Seattle show that only 5 of the 77 Catholic clergy identified as “likely sex abusers of children” since the 1920's have ever been convicted of their crimes. There are Roman Catholic 195 archdioceses/dioceses in the US.
The Parting Shot:


McMike said...

re Sanders and lasting movement. This is why I believe Sanders will fail, even if elected. There is no lasting underlying movement I am aware of. Just an underlying sentiment of dissatisfaction that only manifests every four years and looks depressingly like checkbook liberalism.

FDR indeed stood on the backs of the unions and progressive organizers, who had developed their ideas and tactics over decades, and who were battle tested, and spread out across the country and in its institutions.

The closest thing we've had in a generation or two is one-off peace protests and the OWS movement that (understandably) refused to be an organization, all outside-agitation, and got ignored (peace) driven to ground (OWS) anyway. Until Congress feels the pressure to change, there is no movement, no matter who is in the WH.

Obama did not create a movement, he created a campaign coalition. (While he was taking big checks from Wall Street at the same time). And once elected, instead of allowing that coalition to transition into a movement, he disassembled it. Quite deliberately. Thanks for the ride, I'll take it from here.

Sure, there's fragments of activism out there, and maybe they'll coalesce. But I will believe we have a movement when I see people running for local office, taking over local school boards, getting their heads smashed by cops, vigorously challenging local Dem party structures... until then, following Bernie on FB and sending him $30 is not a movement.

George Anderson said...

@ McMike: Your cynicism is understandable and yes, before electronic brainwashing people actually spoke to one another to pass the time of day (creating consensus) Now that the corporate owned media has hijacked the ersatz commons, leaving the individual with that unpleasant taste in their mouths that comes with a steady diet of bullshit there is no consensus aside from the one they feed us (that our peers are psychos who either don't vote or throw their vote away on the very people responsible for oppressing us) while suspecting the truth, that since it is impossible to verify election results (they simply won't let it happen, the conservative congress would vanish!) The <1% 'coronate' whoever passes their 'sniff-test'.

While this is indeed a bleak set of circumstancees, Bernie's candidacy represents the roots of Hope, the beginning of change (that Obama promised but never delivered on.)

Take this to the bank (although I honestly believe such institutions should be abolished) Change is coming, one way or the other.

Tulsatime said...

Here is an idea for our debt encrusted world, a jubilee! Can you imagine? What would all the hedge fund boys do? And the lawyers? And the banks??

Oh the Horror !!

Jim Dandy said...

Lasting movement? The last time I checked, Sanders doesn't even have an official campaign office in Ohio. Did no one learn anything from Obama's advertising-award winning campaigns? Are we stuck in an endless cycle of suckers falling for the first smooth pitch they hear from political baloney merchants?

kwark said...

RE "Futility" and "Lost an Found": I get the impression that statistician Nate Silver considers Bernie the Democrat's next George McGovern - perhaps because of the infrequent voter thing. Sadly, George McGovern certainly didn't inspire anything lasting other than jokes about his candidacy. What that makes Hillary is unclear . . . maybe the next Michael Dukakis?

I'd LIKE to believe things are different this time with Bernie but I have a profound confidence in the American public's willingness to shoot itself in the proverbial foot (or maybe head this time). . . so falling for the empty blather of an angry, tin horn, narcissist like Trump is all too possible.

RE "Futility" again: A statistically irrelevant observation. I have two friends who gave up voting around 2010 when it became clear that change and Obama didn't belong in the same sentence. Neither one is (as yet anyway) inspired by Bernie to change their opinion about the value of voting. One doesn't think Bernie could accomplish anything even if elected and the other doesn't like Bernie because he isn't as pure as the new driven snow. I don't agree with either but I get the impression that there are a fair number of "potential" bernie voters who probably think as my friends do.

Anonymous said...

Nice to see that Jill Stein makes much the same points I've known for a while, that the machine is so rigged that Bernie Sanders has no chance, and BTW, this is why Warren didn't run.

At best Sen. Bernie Sanders is hoping to push Team Clinton right, but as the Clinton's flip at the wave of a buck, he's not likely to have much effect. For example, his veto of Obama's FDA chief is likely to do more good in the long run, and at that it isn't enough to save this ship.

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