Watch and discuss
Watch and discuss
The reports of the death of the Neo-Conservative Movement have been greatly exaggerated. Dick Cheney has become a cheerleader for Newt Gingrich whose sole intention seems to be to continue The Long War ad infinitum. On a day when we finally ended the most disastrous strategy of the Neo-Cons, the Iraq War, Gingrich is doubling down on the next war–In Iran.
He painted a chain of events in which an Israeli prime minister asked an American president for help with a conventional military invasion of Iran so that Israel would not have to use its nuclear arsenal to defend itself. Mr. Gingrich implied that he would go along. “What I won’t do is allow Israel to be threatened with another Holocaust,” he said. “This is a not-very-far-down-the-road decision.”
A joint US-Israeli invasion of Iran! Unfuckingbelievable. These people are counting on the collective amnesia of Americans.
The juxtaposition of the Gingrich-Cheney Plan for our future with the New York Times discovery of a cache of Top Secret documents about the Haditha Massacre in Iraq couldn’t have been more poignant .
The stress of combat left some soldiers paralyzed, the testimony shows. Troops, traumatized by the rising violence and feeling constantly under siege, grew increasingly twitchy, killing more and more civilians in accidental encounters. Others became so desensitized and inured to the killing that they fired on Iraqi civilians deliberately while their fellow soldiers snapped pictures, and were court-martialed. The bodies piled up at a time when the war had gone horribly wrong.
As I have said before, this election needs to be fought on two issues: income inequality and cutting the bloated Pentagon and our imperial overreach. Whether President Obama and the Democrats have the guts to fight on those issues will be a test, but strangely enough they might find support among the Ron Paul wing of the Republican party in that fight.
For a few years I have worked with the OECD(Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development) in media and telecom issues. The organization has always done the best statistical analysis of the economies of the 30 Developed Countries that are members.
So last week they released their statistics on income inequality in the developed world. With the exception of Mexico and Turkey, the U.S. has the highest inequality level and poverty rate in the OECD. Here are some other depressing facts. Continue reading
Former Fed Vice Chairman Alan Blinder makes a pretty convincing argument, that no matter where you are on the income scale, you do better under a Democratic President.
The stark contrast between the whiz-bang Clinton years and the dreary Bush years is familiar because it is so recent. But while it is extreme, it is not atypical. Data for the whole period from 1948 to 2007, during which Republicans occupied the White House for 34 years and Democrats for 26, show average annual growth of real gross national productof 1.64 percent per capita under Republican presidents versus 2.78 percent under Democrats. That 1.14-point difference, if maintained for eight years, would yield 9.33 percent more income per person, which is a lot more than almost anyone can expect from a tax cut.
What’s even more remarkable is the differential at different income percentiles (chart above) in terms of wealth generation. Though the very rich (95th percentile) do slightly better under Democrats, the very poor (20th percentile) do remarkably better, thus shrinking the income inequality that builds up under Republican Presidents.
Needless to say, McCain vows to continue the Republican tax cuts for the wealthy that the last four Republican Presidents have favored.