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We’re SO Not #1

Good news Americans! Trickle down economics is finally moving toward it’s intended goal. No no, not the bullshit fantastical republican goal of making everyone prosper, but the real goal of redistributing all of the country’s earnings up to the top 1% and creating bonafide Russian style American oligarchs. If you’re paying any attention at all, you’re aware that wages have remained flat for the past thirty years, while productivity has exploded. From 1989 – 2009, the hourly wage of the median worker grew by 10.1%, while productivity grew by 80%. The lion’s share of that wage growth happened in the mid to late 90s.

Still, we’re the "wealthiest nation in the world" because of all that productivity, but you’re not getting wealthier. Your kids probably won’t get wealthier, but the the wealthy are getting wealthier at an accelerated pace. What does that mean in relative terms? It means that as a nation, we’re getting wealthier but our median per capita income is no longer the highest in the world. Wanna take a guess who’s #1 now? If you’re a republican, still clinging on to the massive amount of bullshit that you’ve been fed for the past thirty years, I guarantee that you’ll never guess. Why? Because the answer demolishes everything you’ve been told about both trickle down economics, and "socialism".

Canada now has a higher average per capita median income than the United States does. Seems like that socialist health care hasn’t turned Canada into an impoverished post apocalyptic hellscape after all. The per capita median income in the US hasn’t changed at all since 2000 (when adjusted for inflation). The per capita median income in Canada has gone up twenty percent over that same period.

income

What happened? I thought the Bush/ Obama tax cuts on the top earners was supposed to create a utopia of economic prosperity, what with the trickling down and all? How long am I supposed to wait for my prosperity? It’s been thirteen fucking years? Where’s mine?

Why is this happening? From an article in the New York Times yesterday;

Americans between the ages of 55 and 65 have literacy, numeracy and technology skills that are above average relative to 55- to 65-year-olds in rest of the industrialized world, according to a recent study by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, an international group. Younger Americans, though, are not keeping pace: Those between 16 and 24 rank near the bottom among rich countries, well behind their counterparts in Canada, Australia, Japan and Scandinavia and close to those in Italy and Spain.

But that’s not all;

A second factor is that companies in the United States economy distribute a smaller share of their bounty to the middle class and poor than similar companies elsewhere. Top executives make substantially more money in the United States than in other wealthy countries. The minimum wage is lower. Labor unions are weaker.

And because the total bounty produced by the American economy has not been growing substantially faster here in recent decades than in Canada or Western Europe, most American workers are left receiving meager raises.

And;

Governments in Canada and Western Europe take more aggressive steps to raise the take-home pay of low- and middle-income households by redistributing income.

Janet Gornick, the director of LIS, noted that inequality in so-called market incomes — which does not count taxes or government benefits — “is high but not off the charts in the United States.” Yet the American rich pay lower taxes than the rich in many other places, and the United States does not redistribute as much income to the poor as other countries do. As a result, inequality in disposable income is sharply higher in the United States than elsewhere.

But we’re doing the opposite in the US. We’ve made an education harder to obtain by allowing colleges to jack up tuition exponentially faster than the rate of inflation. We’ve kept the minimum wage so low that it’s worth (in terms of buying power) about 60% of what is was worth in 1968 when it was at its peak. We keep cutting social safety nets because we’re told that we need to in order to save our economy, while countries that spend more money on helping the poorest citizens are passing us by in median income.

One big country in Europe is also experiencing stagnating wages; Germany. Why? Because Germany exports a lot of crap and in order to keep the cost of their crap low, they’ve taken a number of measures to keep wages down. They’re trying to compete with the sweat shops in China. Why? Because as long as you can buy cheap crap, it’s easier to maintain the illusion of wealth. When you can buy a blu ray player for $50 bucks, you’re not really poor because you don’t feel the poorness. 

The stagnating wages in the US and in Germany aren’t an accident or an unintended consequence. This is happening by design. And while republicans are telling you that "government can’t do anything", they’ve created a government that is robbing you blind.

I created this meme last year;

Tax Distribution copy

I spent days getting the corporate subsidy numbers together. I left out a metric ton of corporate subsidies because I wasn’t confident I was able to find all of them. They’re insidiously buried in thousands of bills that ostensibly have nothing to do with the industry that the bill is about. I know I didn’t get all of the big agra subsidies, or the big pharma subsidies so I left them out. I didn’t include these subsidies either since they come out of your state taxes, rather than your federal taxes;

Walmart

I used the smallest number I could fine in every category I listed. I explained how I came up with these numbers ad nauseam and yet, I got more push back for this meme than anything else I’ve ever said or posted. I wrote about a report that Oxfam published a few months ago, where they found that the 85 richest people in the world possess the same wealth as the bottom 3.5 billion people. I write about income inequality and how the game is rigged a lot. And every time I do, I get push back from a small minority of people that just don’t want to believe what their own lying eyes are telling them. Fortunately, these people are "special" (by special, I mean touched). They’re a small minority. Only 30% of Americans think that we’re on the right path. This number isn’t low because of Obama, it’s been low for fifteen years now. The most disengaged and uninformed American knows that something is horribly wrong here, even if they don’t specifically know that the Dow has doubled since the economic collapse, while we still have a much higher than ideal unemployment rate.

Our poor are more poor than the poor in other countries. From the Times article;

More broadly, the poor in the United States have trailed their counterparts in at least a few other countries since the early 1980s. With slow income growth since then, the American poor now clearly trail the poor in several other rich countries. At the 20th percentile — where someone is making less than four-fifths of the population — income in both the Netherlands and Canada was 15 percent higher than income in the United States in 2010.

Our rich are much richer than the rich in most other countries;

By contrast, Americans at the 95th percentile of the distribution — with $58,600 in after-tax per capita income, not including capital gains — still make 20 percent more than their counterparts in Canada, 26 percent more than those in Britain and 50 percent more than those in the Netherlands. For these well-off families, the United States still has easily the world’s most prosperous major economy.

Fortunately, more and more Americans are realizing this because they see it every day. I’m going to keep writing about this because I believe that the income inequality in America is going to be our downfall. I’m going to keep pointing out the thousands of ways the game is rigged against you, and I’m going to look forward to the day when I don’t get any stupid comments from the touched ones that can’t accept the reality in which they live because the Ayn Rand fantasy in their heads is much more appealing than actually doing something to improve their lot in life.

The game is rigged. It’s rigged, it’s rigged, it’s rigged and you’re on the wrong side of the rigging.       

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The End Of Affirmative Action?

The Supreme Court did what I expected they would do today; killed affirmative action in college admissions. I’m going to say something controversial now; I’m not actually for affirmative action, especially in college admissions. Let me explain. Affirmative action is a bad solution to a really bad problem. It’s a terrible solution because it doesn’t address the root cause of the problem, it merely attempts to course correct after the problem occurs.

We have some data now that shows that affirmative action, particularly at the ivy league level is actually not a great solution. It puts students into a situation that they are in no way prepared for, and the dropout rate is pretty high. This problem is referred to as a "mismatch". There is a lot of debate over whether a mismatch actually exists. I tend to believe that it’s a thing, but here are a couple of the most compelling papers I’ve found on the subject. Here’s the yes, a mismatch exists argument, and here’s the mismatch debunking argument.

In my experience as a corporate recruiter, I’ve seen both. I’ve interviewed diversity candidates that were clearly admitted to ivy league universities as part of a quota, who did very well at those universities. I’ve also seen my fair share of diversity candidates that didn’t graduate from the ivy league university they attended.

In my opinion, the problem that needs to be addressed starts years before it’s time to apply for college. We have an institutional racism problem that starts at pre-k. Let me be clear on this; the problem I’m referring to is quickly shifting from a racism problem to a poverty problem. As with everything else, it’s about the advantages that the rich have over the poor. People who live in poor neighborhoods get shitty schools. If you’re a poor person living in a poor neighborhood, the property taxes collected to pay for education in your community does not afford your child the same resources that someone from a rich neighborhood gets. People often make the point that America’s spending on education is among the highest in the world, and we still get inferior outcomes so more spending isn’t the answer. These people ignore the distribution of that money, and the disparity that exists. Outcomes are not as poor in schools with more resources, and I don’t believe that kids from rich neighborhoods have more active parents. Didn’t we just see some really fucking rich people proclaim that their crappy parenting caused their child to develop affluenza? Which is it? Are wealthy people better parents, or are they worse parents? I tend to think that there are good parents and bad parents in all income levels. But the rich parents have the resources to outsource the raising of their children. They can afford tutors and SAT test preppers to augment their already well resourced schools. So there’s an institutional disparity in the level of education for poor kids and rich kids. And since we created entire low income neighborhoods, we have minorities concentrated in specific parts of town. This is changing, as more white people are entering the poverty class. But for right now, it’s a race thing more than it is a class thing. 

A component of the institutional racism that most people aren’t aware of, exists in how college admissions are handled. A kid graduating from Compton High School with a 4.2 GPA is weighed against a Beverly Hills High graduate with a 3.7 GPA. Why? Because the level of education at Compton High is lower. Again, we have an institutional problem that further stacks the deck.

On top of all that, the ivy league has an affirmative action program that will never be challenged; legacy admissions. If your Harvard educated parents affluenzaed you into a complete miscreant, no problem. Their donations to Harvard will guarantee your admission and further enable you to affluenza your way through the rest of your life with an ivy league diploma. None of the ivy league universities disclose the percentage of legacy students they admit every year. When I interview ivy league graduates, it becomes apparent who the legacies are. Trust me, affluenza is a thing and I’ve interviewed more than my fair share of self entitled dim wits. Fortunately for them, my recognition of their dim wittery won’t stop them from getting the job, as they frequently come to me as "must hires" since either mommy or daddy knows an executive at the company. More institutional racism.

On the bright side, aside from the must hire legacies, corporate America is not racist. Corporate America is greedy, and since racism might eventually cost them a dollar, it doesn’t really exist. Don’t get me wrong, hiring managers tend to have teams that look like them. This is true of both white and minority managers. It’s a relatability issue. It’s human nature to relate to people with backgrounds similar to your own. Since corporate America has always been majority white, the relatability issue does tend to further the racial disparity among the employee population but I also see minority managers hiring more minority employees to work under them. I have often been given the directive make minority hires for positions, so companies (at least really big ones) are aiming for diversity.

The issue I run into with these searches for diversity candidates is the lack of qualified candidates to fill them. The proportion of diversity college graduates with experience is not equal to the proportion of minorities in America. That’s just a fact. It’s getting a little bit better every year, but it’s still a problem. Two or three generations ago, black people simply didn’t have the opportunity to go to college. College is a generational thing. If your parents went to college, you’re almost certain to get a college degree so that first generation is the key to every generation that follows it. And that first generation approach college much differently than the third or fourth generation. That first generation isn’t aware of all of the different career possibilities. They’re not going for careers in publishing, architecture, or mechanical engineering because those careers don’t exist in their universe. They’re choosing from a limited field of careers and getting general degrees like “business”. Third and fourth generation college graduates have more exposure, and are getting more specialized degrees. They have their eye on a specific career as opposed to a first generation college graduates who tend to have an eye on a degree. This is just the natural evolution of educating a population, and it’s not unique to minorities.

That’s why I don’t believe that affirmative action in college admissions is the way to go. It was a nice try, but I don’t think that it produces the results we really want. We need to tear down every level of institutional racism that takes place before college application time. We need to stop tying school funds to property taxes. Each state needs to spend the same amount of money on each student in their state. We can’t have pre-k available in only certain communities. All of the students in each state must be treated equally from pre-k all the way up to their senior year of high school. If that happens, the diversity ratios will take care of themselves at the college level and we would have students that are prepared for the college in which they were admitted.

As I said, there’s no racism problem in corporate America so there’s nothing to be done at that level. Fortune 500 companies are always looking to expand their diversity numbers, and I do a great deal of diversity outreach in order to accomplish that goal. But I can tell you that I’ve literally never hired a less qualified minority candidate over a white candidate. That simply doesn’t happen, regardless of the perception. The diversity initiative begins and ends in generating the candidate pool. There are no federal quotas for companies, and EEOC doesn’t look at the ratio of white to minority candidates a company hires. When they do anything at all, they look for discrimination. This usually happens when a complaint of discrimination is reported. They look at the candidate pool to assess if a less qualified candidate was hired over a female, minority, or a more "seasoned" candidate. I have very little experience in blue collar industries, and no experience in union environments so I can’t speak to those industries.

At any rate, I think it’s time to let affirmative action in college admissions go but not without addressing the institutional problems prior to college. You can’t just get of a less than ideal remedy to a problem without doing a damned thing to address the problem. It won’t go away if you pretend it doesn’t exist. We need better, more effective solutions than what we’ve been trying for 50 years.            

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Registering Jews Again?

There was a lot of reporting yesterday on a story that claims that Jews in Ukraine are being ordered to "register" themselves and all of their property.

Those of you who know I’m Jewish probably wondered why I didn’t post it. I didn’t post it because I don’t entirely believe it. Yes, the flyers ordering the Jews to register are real but I question who the source is. It sounds just a little too crazy, and a lot too reckless because doing something like this opens up a whole new can of global involvement that wouldn’t otherwise be at play.

I thought back to Occupy Wall Street and how in some cities, they were infiltrated by some people who were looking to cause problems and therefore label the whole movement "thuggish".

A writer at The New Republic Wrote a piece echoing my doubts. She seems much more certain than I am that this isn’t really happening. From the article:
 

The Donetsk Jewish community dismissed this as "a provocation," which it clearly is. "It’s an obvious provocation designed to get this exact response, going all the way up to Kerry," says Fyodr Lukyanov, editor of Russia in Global Affairs. "I have no doubt that there is a sizeable community of anti-Semites on both sides of the barricades, but for one of them to do something this stupid—this is done to compromise the pro-Russian groups in the east."

I’m not convinced one way or another, but I am watching it. As I said this sounds like a preposterously stupid move to make before reaching the endgame of taking Ukraine back for Russia. I’m positive that Putin has his eye on Ukraine. I’m positive that both the EU and the US are discussing how to respond when Putin goes into Ukraine with Russian forces. Right now, Angela Merkel is running the show, as she should be. This is much more of an EU problem, than it is a US problem. I know that some people think that the US decides what happens around the world, but I really get the sense that Obama is letting Merkel take point on this one.

I’ve read a lot about the dynamics between Russia and the EU (specifically Germany) that talk about the EU’s dependency on the Russian energy supply. Not that it matters, but I don’t think that energy is the main consideration. I think that Merkel is more concerned about the economic impacts of cutting off the sizeable EU (again, specifically Germany’s) exports to Russia. They would be cutting off a whole lot of Russian consumers from buying their goods at a time when those customers are badly needed. Remember, Spain and Greece are still in big trouble, and they’re not in any position to buy nearly as much stuff as they need to in order to strengthen the EU economy. Cutting off Russia right now would be very bad for Germany.

But whether the issue is energy or other goods, the call on how far to go to stop Putin is largely Merkel’s to make. But if Jews are actually being forced to register themselves and their property, everything changes and Obama will take the lead. The US will take much stronger measures than what are being taken now, and there’s no telling how far this situation will escalate.

That’s why these reports don’t make sense to me. It seems to me that Putin wouldn’t allow something like this to happen because this would seriously jeopardize his already slim chances of taking Ukraine. It makes more sense for Putin to roll out the Doctor Evil routine after he’s secured the country. We’ll see what happens but for the reasons I’ve just shared, I’m really skeptical that this is happening. I’m not prepared to sound the alarms just yet.   


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Your Heros Are The Problem

By now you’ve all heard about the shootings at Jewish community centers in Kansas. The short version is that Frazier Glenn Cross (or Miller, who the fuck knows), a well known and proud anti-semite (he’s actually a racism generalist who hates all races, but seems particularly pissed at the Jews) decided he would do something about the dreaded Jewish scourge in Kansas by shooting up a couple of Jewish centers. Being the genius that he is, he managed to kill three Christians and no Jews before he was arrested. He’s a convicted felon who made the Southern Poverty Law Center’s list of extremists to look out for. He was a founder and "grand dragon" of the Klan in Kansas. By the way, what the fuck kind of lame organization has dragons, knights, and wizards? I guess it makes sense, since they’re trying to perpetuate the fantasy of white supremacy. One would think that the fact that Miller couldn’t tell a Christian from a Jew would tell these psychos something about their "supremacy", but I suspect it won’t.

I digress. Peter Bergen and David Sterman wrote a piece for CNN yesterday that is sure to have the right wing up in arms. They found that since 9/11, right wing extremists have murdered 34 Americans while Muslim extremists have killed 21. Left wing extremists do exist, but their death toll remains at zero. Remember when a few years ago when DHS put out a report in which they raised red flags over the growing number of right wing extremists in America and the right wing media lost their shit? DHS has not put out a single report analyzing threats from extremists since. But the numbers here are clear; DHS was right to warn about right wing extremism. And as with climate change, rampant gun ownership and the price we pay, "abstinence only" and the increased number of teen pregnancies it leads to, and a myriad of other topics that the right wing has managed shut out of the discussion, the reality doesn’t change just because you don’t talk about it.

We do have a right wing extremist problem, and it’s getting worse. Notice the emphasis on right wing? That isn’t ideological, it’s empirical. Let’s review the scoreboard again;

Murders by Muslim extremists – 21

Murders by right wing extremists – 34

Murders by left wing extremists – 0

Why is that? Why are there more murders by extremists of the right wing variety, than any other flavor of extremist? It’s the culture, stupid. I’ve spoken to a number of batshit crazy people who call themselves liberals, so why are they not murderous in equal numbers with the batshit on the right? Let’s look at right wing heroes of the recent past. There’s George Zimmerman who murdered an unarmed black kid, Phil Robertson who hates the gays, Sarah Palin of "he pals around with terrorists" fame, Ted Nugent who makes love to his guns every night while regaling in his tales of draft dodging, and now there’s Clive Bundy. These are not far right wing heroes, these are heroes that the mainstream right wing has embraced. Fox news has taken these miscreants into the warm embrace of the mainstream right wing bosom.

What do these heroes all have in common? Hatred. They’re all against something, and exist for the sole purpose of dividing us based on hatred. Remember when Trump was on Fox every hour, demanding to see the birth certificate? Can anyone tell me what Trump is for, and when the last time he did an interview espousing the virtue of what he’s for? How about Palin? What is she for? We know that Nugent is for guns, but that’s for the sole purpose of making the hate more lethal since we know by his draft dodging, pant pooping history, that he’s not for America.

And now we have Clive Bundy. A whacko moocher that doesn’t want to pay for the stuff he uses. He doesn’t own the land he wants to use, never has owned the land he wants to use, and was told in court that he needs to pay for the use of that land. That’s what we do in the first world; we go to court. But this whack job thinks that he can just keep mooching by gathering together an armed militia to help him take what was never his to take. And for this, he’s a right wing hero. I’ve got some news for his insane supporters; I believe there are more than a few native Americans that can come in and seize Bundy’s own ranch by using the same rationale that Bundy is using to mooch from you.

But again, I digress. The heroes of the mainstream right wing embody  and create the culture in the right wing. This is a culture of violence and hatred. And that culture is why their extremists are more dangerous than other extremists. Extremists, by definition are dangerous but right wing extremists are fueled by mainstream right wing culture.

Bill Maher likes to say that there’s something inherently more violent about the Muslim religion, than other religions. He’s dead wrong. It’s the culture, stupid. Muslims in a more violent culture are more violent than Muslims in a less violent culture. Murder is not a socially acceptable remedy in the first world so by and large, Muslims don’t murder in first world countries. Is anyone familiar with the crusades? How about the Spanish Inquisition? Why were Christians so violent back then? Because it was culturally acceptable.

Again, refer to the death toll scoreboard above. Muslim extremists are not extra, super murderous in the first world. If you want to add 9/11 to that scoreboard, that’s totally fair. That puts the Muslim extremist count at 22 because 9/11 was one incident, by one extremist group who got very lucky and racked up a giant death toll. We don’t score differently because Bin Laden was more effective than the anti semitic whacko who couldn’t shoot straight, and killed three Christians.

We have a right wing culture problem and letting the right wing shut us up about it isn’t going to solve the problem. When the Boston Marathon bombing happened, I said that I was hoping that the perpetrator was white. Why? Because we don’t lose our shit when it’s a white guy but when it’s a Muslim, we create a whole new giant government bureaucracy to molest us at the airport. When a Muslim puts a bomb in his shoe, we all have to take off our shoes prior to either having a naked picture taken, or a state sanctioned molestation. But we don’t do anything when a terrorist is white. We don’t even keep score anymore.

Pretending like it doesn’t exist, tacitly fuels the problem. As a nation, we are not outraged by the murder of a physician whose women’s health services happen to include abortion. That lack of outrage is a tacit permission for the anti choice zealots to do it again. When a white guy shoots up a Sikh temple, it’s news for one single day. There’s no national outrage the way there is when a Muslim guy kills no one in Times Square with a sloppily assembled bomb. Moreover, there’s virtually no mention of the fact that the guy who alerted authorities to a potential problem was himself Muslim.

Ignoring the problem is part of the problem. So is creating a false equivalency between the right wing and left wing. They’re not equal, and those of you that want me to call it even can go fuck yourselves. I’m not going to blame both sides equally, just to make you feel better about your shitty choices. You can either make better choices, or embrace your crappy ones but I’m not going to mitigate the hate that your party perpetuates. Left wing heroes include MLK, FDR, Rosa Parks, Che Guevara, Harvey Milk, and Cesar Chavez. These are all people that were for something, and that accomplished something that made the world demonstrably better. It’s true that the left doesn’t have very many recent heroes but not having a hero in the past 30 years is very different than propping up a murderer, a draft dodger, a hater, and a moocher. Both sides are not equal, and the lack of a hero on the left is a function of our broken political system that gives more democracy to those with more money. Elizabeth Warren is my hero because she’s telling the money to go fuck itself every day.

Both sides are not equal, and the mainstream right wing needs to be called out for its murder inspiring culture. When Bill O’Reilly goes on TV and repeats the phrase "Tiller the baby killer", he needs to be called out for fueling the crazy. Hannity needs to be called out for his love of Zimmerman and Bundy because he’s fueling the hate and bubbling the extremists to the surface.

We need to stop being polite or even handed in America. When both sides are equally problematic, I will be even handed. In the meantime, I blame mainstream republicans and the heroes they hold so dear.                     

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Even Bad Speech Is Good

I posted a story yesterday about how the freshly minted CEO of Mozilla was forced to step down because of the backlash to his support of Prop 8 in California. Brendan Eich donated $1,000 to support inequality and second class citizenship of the gay community. I’m obviously vehemently opposed to what he and his like minded peers were trying to do.

I’m also vehemently opposed to punishing someone for having an opinion, even if it’s a bad opinion. Bad opinions are valuable because they move national discussions forward, which is exactly what this one did. If Prop 8 had never passed, DOMA would still be the law of the land and we would still only have about six states with marriage equality. This bad opinion put us on a fast track to the inevitable because it was a bad opinion. Treating people as second class citizens is a bad idea and over time, the good idea was going to become the majority idea. Prop 8 led to the striking down of DOMA, which led to the striking down of bad anti-equality laws all across the country. Does anyone think that the anti-equality law in Utah would have gotten a second look without DOMA having been struck down? In the long arc of history, good ideas always prevail. It doesn’t happen quickly, but it happens.

The only reasons I can come up with for shutting down the ability of someone to express an idea, is because you’re threatened or you’re blinded by emotion. Both the right and the left have adopted and embraced this dangerous and short sided tactic of shutting down opinions they don’t like.

To my fellow liberals who are rejoicing over Eich’s resignation, I have a question; have you forgotten the "you’re either with us, or you’re unpatriotic" Bush years? Seriously. What are you rejoicing over? Do you really think that next time, it won’t be your idea that is deemed shun worthy again? I know what you’re saying; "but I was right". Yes, and your opinion was a threat to the thin ice that the pro Iraq invasion and occupation side were trumpeting so they shut you down. And you’re emotionally invested in marriage equality, so you shut down the other side. But the end result is the same; Americans advocating for shutting up other Americans.

I don’t know what Eich’s motivations were for opposing equality, and I don’t care. He gets to have an opinion without having his livelihood threatened for the rest of his life. Why are we happy with this outcome? Shutting people up is just unAmerican. I’m sorry, but it is and I don’t care what your motivations are. There are plenty of places in the world we abhor for shutting people up. Do we really want to turn into that?

This is a stupid and dangerous path to take and anyone who thinks that Eich’s termination is a victory better think again.

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McConnell Needs To Get McCutcheoned

As you probably know, the Supreme Court handed down their deplorable decision in McCutcheon v FEC today. I’m not going to get into an analysis of the decision since you’ve probably read lots of analysis already and my Facebook page makes my opinion on the matter very clear. But to summarize, the Supreme Court eviscerated democracy today. Our only hope now to truly restore democracy is to go for an Article V convention to amend the constitution.

If you read this blog or follow me on social media, you know that I really believe that what Wolf Pac is doing is our last and only resort to fix this. Let me explain what we’re doing and why it’s our only option for fixing this. We’re calling for an amendment to the constitution to get money out of politics. We’re not going through congress or the supreme court. We’re working on the state level to introduce a resolution calling for a constitutional convention. We need 34 states to pass our resolution. We have 10 states on the board right now. By "on the board", I mean that they have either already introduced, or are about to introduce our resolution. How did we do this? By working with legislators in our state. Why? For a couple of reasons. First off, we’re finding that democracy actually exists on a state level. When you call your state senator, on average, you can get a meeting with them in 3 calls. Since no one ever calls their local representatives, they seem to mostly be willing to meet with their constituents because they assume that if one constituent took the time to call, hundreds more are concerned with that issue. I personally met with both the assemblyman (woman) and the state senator who introduced our legislation here in New York. In one state (I can’t remember which), a Wolf PAC volunteer called their legislator, who actually personally answered the phone. He met that legislator for coffee later that afternoon, and had the resolution introduced the next day. In 3 states, the legislators introducing our resolution are far right wing republicans. This is a bipartisan issue, and we have a bipartisan group of volunteers.The second reason for doing it this way, is because we don’t trust congress to get it done. There’s way too much money being spent on a federal level, and our odds of crossing the finish line are exponentially higher if we work on a state level.

Today’s McCutcheon decision will undoubtedly make this harder. Citizen’s United eviscerated democracy on the federal level, McCutcheon has gutted democracy on a local level, since a single donor can now buy all the local politicians in a whole state simultaneously. The Koch brothers are busy working on buying local elections. McCutcheon makes it possible for them to buy lots and lots of local elections.

We all need to pray that they successfully buy one in particular; Mitch McConnell’s senate seat in Kentucky. McConnell’s opponent, Matt Bevin is already getting a ton of money that we know about (this doesn’t include "dark money"). The tea party, whoever the fuck they are anymore, don’t think that McConnell is right wingy enough so they’re pouring money into Bevin’s campaign. Actually, we do know who has put a million dollars (so far) into Bevin’s bank account; Freedomworks. Why are we praying that batshit crazy Bevin beats McConnell? Because this might be the wakeup call republicans need to see how devastating granting money the right to free speech is. If Mitch McConnell is taken down by the tea party, republicans will realize once and for all, that the corporations are the actual puppetmasters, and that they’re just puppets. Corporations are not people. They have no conscience, and they have no loyalties. Corporations have only one mission; to make as much money as possible. No amount of money is ever enough, so if there’s more money to be made, a corporation will go in that direction. Given McConnell’s history of obnixious generosity toward corporations, I can only assume that Bevin plans on direct depositing a percentage of Kentuckian’s paychecks directly into corporate coffers. It’s the only reason why the money wants Bevin to beat McConnell.

If McConnell loses this primary, there’s a slight chance that his buddies who thought they had the money all locked up will realize that their own power doesn’t belong to them. That it’s just been bestowed upon them by their corporate masters who can (and will) reallocate it anytime they want. Maybe a few of our "powerful" politicians will realize that their power is just an illusion created by the corporations that own them.

McConnell should already realize this because of all the money his opponent is getting, but he inexplicably threw in with McCutcheon as a plaintiff in this case. The level of arrogance and self delusion on McConnell’s part is stunning. He’s so confident that the money will never leave him to move on to greener pastures, he’s willing to give the money more power than it already has. Guess what Mitch?

The money has no loyalty. President Obama was confident that the money was going to be loyal to him too. But predictably, the Wall Street money wasn’t satisfied with everything Obama let it get away with and decided that Romney was going to be even more generous. So Obama had to find different money to buy the White House with.

One of the mighty (in their own minds) politicians needs to fall hard because of this decision. I’m rooting for McConnell.

If that happens maybe, maybe some of these guys might realize that the power they gave to the billionaires, is power that will inevitably be used against them. This decision makes the politicians themselves irrelevant because it gives the money even more power to easily replace one patsy politician who isn’t going far enough to increase profits at the expense of the people.

Our politicians have been whores for a long time. This decision has downgraded them from high priced call girls, to $5 hand job, street corner whores. 

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