Robert Reich Debunks 6 Big GOP Lies About The Economy

Worth watching. The lies are these – (watch the video to see how he debunks them):

  1. Tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations will trickle down to benefit the middle class and the poor. Corporations are having higher profits now than we have seen in 35 years. Ratio of profits to wages is higher now than it ever has been since before the Great Depression of the 1930s.
  2. If you shrink government you create jobs. (No, you get rid of jobs that way.)
  3. High taxes on the rich hurts the economy. (No, the economy grew when the US did this under Eisenhower.)
  4. Debt is to be avoided and it is mostly caused by Medicare. (No, if debt is properly used to grow the economy, it becomes a smaller part of the budget because of increased revenue and Medicare has the lowest overhead of any health insurance plan out there.)
  5. Social Security is a Ponzi scheme (No, its solid for 26 years. Social Security is solid beyond that if the rich pay the same percentage in social security taxes as the rest of us do.)
  6. We need to tax the poor. (This is what Republicans have been proposing when they say any “tax reform” needs to involve all Americans because poor people pay no income tax. The poor have no money and taxing them will not solve our budget problems.)
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Made in America

One of the ways we can all help our economy is to look for products made in America, especially in the upcoming Christmas season. Here are some directories to get you started finding products made here in the United States by American workers.

Americans Working

a Directory of products made in the United States

US Stuff
Still Made in USA
The Keep America Working Blog

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links for 2010-02-21

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links for 2010-02-19

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links for 2010-02-18

  • An interesting perspective. Dunno what I think about it yet — "A Wall Streeter buys the life insurance policies of individuals with terminal illnesses, packages them into securities, and profits when the underlying collateral dies. In his most recent movie, Michael Moore documented the practice of taking out "peasant insurance" on employees. Now we learn that firms continue to carry life insurance on former employees, hoping they will die untimely deaths so that the firm can collect."
  • By design, the Act had three primary purposes: Rescue, Recovery and Reinvestment. The enclosed report reviews our progress in each of these three areas. Almost 20 million Americans have gotten extended unemployment benefits thanks to the Act, and over 95 percent of working families have had their taxes cut. Jobs have been created thanks to tens of thousands of projects now underway nationwide. And the groundwork for the economy of the next century is being put in place as we invest in high speed rail, health technology, broadband, a smarter electrical grid, clean cars and batteries, and renewable energy.
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links for 2010-02-11

  • The prime purpose of the new and unimproved scoring system was to better quantify the various elements in a program — required jumps and spins — so that the famously nefarious judges would have less latitude to cheat. Alas, this created a scoring system so arcane, it makes computing the Standard & Poor's index child's play. Moreover, by emphasizing compulsory obligations, the new system diminished the emphasis on artistry.
  • Bankers deserve their bonuses? Are you crazy? They don't deserve their JOBS. And frankly, I still think there are a dozen of them that need to be set on fire in the middle of Wall Street. You don't fuck up worse than these guys fucked up – and they did it out of sheer greed. There are people homeless, starving and on the street because of the criminal actions of these greedy assholes. Fuck them and their bonuses.
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Barney Frank puts ridiculous questioner in her place at town hall

At a Barney Frank town hall meeting in Dartmouth, MA, a constituent asks, “Why are you supporting this Nazi policy?”

Frank responds: “On what planet do you spend most of your time?” He then calls her approach “vile, contemptible nonsense.” He closes by saying: “Trying to have a conversation with you would be like arguing with a dining room table.”

Thank Maude people are FINALLY calling this nutty kookery for what it is.

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Economic Meltdown Articles of Interest

There are a couple news items about the economy that I found to be tremendously helpful. I’ve linked to them from one or another of my links posts, but it’s very much worth it to pull them out and highlight them, because knowledge is power, and more average people need a really good understanding of what’s going on than the lame drivel they’re getting from the news.

This American Life Podcast: Bad Banks
The collapse of the banking system explained, in just 59 minutes. This is an AWESOME explanation of our current economic situation. If you’re at all like me and financial stuff is SO BORING that it gives you a headache, this podcast will do wonders for you. Everything laid out in layman’s terms so it’s clear what’s going on.

The Big Takeover : Rolling Stone
Matt Taibbi takes the explanations from This American Life quite a bit further, filling in the blanks and making the situation much clearer about how bad things really are. Which is bad. Really bad. As in “batten down the hatches and hold on for dear life” bad. Taibbi isn’t afraid to point the fingers and name the names. And to use the colorful language that is frankly required in this situation.

And now back to lighter things, because if I think about all that too long I’m going to curl up in a ball in the corner — Part of the lack of blogging is that we’ve been rather heads down on household projects over the last couple weekends.

What we’ve been working on:

a) Finishing painting in the staircase room:

b) And doing some reorganization in the library:

c) And also – not the least of our household projects – building new bookcases in the dining room for Stephanie’s library:

We have a couple more bookcases to put up, and we’re done, and ready to move on to some yard work and some other fun projects.

Continue ReadingEconomic Meltdown Articles of Interest