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A new way to think of US Congressional Districts and political campaigns

November 30, 2011 in 2012 Elections

As many of you already know, I’m running for the U.S. Congress as an Independent representative from the 32nd Congressional District against incumbent Pete Sessions.  Of course I want to win and I also want my campaign to be an example of how I would like to see all campaigns for US Congress run.

The first step is to realize how thoroughly corrupt and dysfunctional that the current model is.

I will not follow the current wasteful, perverse and corrupt Party Campaign Fund Raising Model.  Thus if my campaign efforts and appeal are not able to get the people out in the neighborhoods, knocking on doors for me and talking about issues and solutions that matter, Pete Sessions and the minority will remain in power, or he will be replaced by someone from the other party who follows the same dysfunctional fund raising model and who votes for the same job-destroying trade agreements.

  • No, I won’t be participating in the usual campaign fund raising frenzy that we see candidates from both parties indulging in.  Such activities are manifestations of our dysfunctional culture whereby we attach value to a person according to how much money they have.  It is absurd.  We should be repulsed by any candidate whose campaign coffers are flush because the more money a candidate has in their campaign coffers, the less likely they are to represent the majority in their district and the more likely they are to have sold out to special interests.

Unlike Pete Sessions, I won’t be hosting ski junkets to Park City  or expensive weekend golf junkets that cost participants thousands of dollars. Unlike Pete Sessions, I won’t be taking money from the Koch brothers.

If Mr. Sessions actually read the local news, he would know that the Dallas Morning News reported in September of 2010 that nearly 4.3 million Texans lived in poverty in 2009–a whopping 11 percent increase from 2008.  I guess Mr. Sessions was too busy getting rich himself to notice. US Representative, Pete Sessions from the 32nd US Congressional District reported a net worth of $3,376,000 in 2008 and a net worth of $4,904,000 in 2009.  Thus in the time period in which 2.6 million Americans in 2008 and 4.7 million in 2009 lost their jobs and poverty increased in his own state by 11%, Mr. Sessions made $1,528,000 off his Wall Street investments.

If you know anything about how Wall Street has made money for the past three years, you know that they have not made money by creating and selling products and services.  Instead they have made their billions by cutting costs–firing Americans and selling off assets, then returning those “savings” to their shareholders like Mr. Sessions in the form of dividends.

Mr. Sessions and his Congressional votes have made him richer and those he is supposed to represent poorer.Dallas county, in which most of the 32nd district lies, is particularly hard hit. Eighteen percent of all the children in Dallas county have no health insurance–twice the national average and 37% of our children live in poverty.What is a candidate like Pete Sessions from the 32nd U.S. Congressional district  doing hosting a luxury ski junket to Park City Utah?  Someone needs to tell Pete Sessions that he does not live in Utah and the majority of the people he is supposed to represent can’t afford to ski or golf.

How exactly does an upcoming fund raiser Park City ski junket benefit the people of the 32nd district?  What do Pete Sessions constituents get from that?  They get zip folks–that’s what we get.  Pete Sessions, on the other hand, and his “people” and his relatives get a free luxury vacation and Pete gets more money in his campaign coffers with which he can use to fund BS for the people of his district–slick double talk newspeak propaganda and corporate designed PowerPoint slides about how trade agreements create jobs for Americans.

All Americans should be viewing all candidates with large campaign coffers and out of state fund raisers with extreme suspicion–not awe.

The second step is to create a model for running a campaign that benefits the people of the district in ways that can be measured. What can candidates do now to strengthen the economy of the Congressional District in which they live?

The USA is already organized into 435 hives (our U.S. Congressional Districts). All Congressional Districts are roughly the same size of 600,000 people.  Most Americans are not even conscious of the boundaries of their Congressional District, but with education that can change and this knowledge can be used to develop strong local economies with three or more cooperatives to anchor each district.  Each hive is a collection of many cells–all interconnected.  Ideally, no less than 100 cells could be established within each Congressional district.  Here are just a few of the ways that campaigns could be set up:

  • Instead of permanent  campaign headquarters, candidates and volunteers can keep all the necessary supplies in their own homes. [If you are a candidate who thinks you need a storefront, then at the least you can figure out a way to provide a space for a few homeless people to sleep there overnight. Candidates who don't do this, or who weasel out using codes as an excuse don't really give a damn about the growing issues of homelessness in our nation. These people can be your night security guards.]
  • For phone banking, follow the model that was established by MoveOn and hold phone banking parties simultaneously from various volunteers homes.
  • Hold all meetings in locally owned restaurants and coffee shops.  Instead of one big meeting, have many small meetings in the district organized at city or even neighborhood levels.  Representatives from these meetings could be chosen to report to a central person who then posts the updates via a website for the candidate.
  • Collect funds from citizens in two parts:  A smaller percentage of 25% goes to the campaign expenses while a 75% portion is reserved to be used to enhance the quality of life for the people living in the district according to what study groups representative of the majority decide.  (I will be working with a  lawyer in December to set up my fund-raising in such a way. Instead of taking money from people and preaching about what they are going to do, a true representative of the people would not only pour the most of their contributions back into the district, they would figure out ways to grow that investment for the community.)

Creating a new model for a political campaign is a challenge, but it is also a huge opportunity for candidates and the people in their districts to participate in government in ways that will benefit them directly and change the lives of the people who live in the community for the better.

We need to encourage one another to think differently regarding solutions to our problems at a local level where we have control and can actually manage things.  I believe that we have all the resources we need if we will work together and provided that we have leadership at the level of a Congressional District.

We must dare to dream large.  We must learn from the successful examples of others–how they did it and how we can do it better.

For example, 600 people of Saranac, New York established their own community discount store and kept WalMart out of their community. The 32nd U.S. Congressional District has over 18% of our children living without health insurance.  This means no wellness checks, no dental care, no immunizations, etc.  What if people in the 32nd district pooled our money and created three health care clinics for children in our district?  How difficult would that be?  If each person in our district contributed $100.00 a year.  That would be $60 million. (Those who could afford more would contribute more. Those who had no money would contribute in service–manning the front desk, cleaning up the place, etc.)  $100 for a year of healthcare for your child is not bad.  I know.  I am talking about three healthcare clinics for the 32nd district.  There are many medical needs for children that could not be met by clinics, but this is a start. These clinics would be staffed by volunteers.  How many dentists, doctors and nurses must there be in the 32nd district who would be willing to donate 2 hours of service a week?  A staff of 80 volunteers for each clinic would be sufficient.  Surely there must be 240 medical professionals willing to do this?

All political campaigns of all candidates should be donating a large percentage of their campaign funds to establish and directly and measurably support the people and local businesses in their district.

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At the end of any political campaign, the citizens of all Congressional Districts should be left with more than tin buttons and bumper stickers after having sent yet another Wall Street Carpetbagger back to Washington.  They should have plans in effect and seed money to strengthen the economy of their district–plans that are being steered by citizens from the 99% who are not members of special interest groups like the U.S Chamber of Commerce who represent Wall Street, not Main Street.

If all you are getting from a candidate are promises of what they will do when they get to Washington, you will be likely be waiting a long time for a return on your investment in their campaign.  We need candidates who will used their campaigns as a tool to make changes now.

Proclaim the Queen!

    The perfect comeback for the jackasses in Congress who recently voted to continue to ship jobs overseas

    November 28, 2011 in 2012 Elections

    As I’ve mentioned, the Congressional millionaire Wall Street shysters are laying it on  thick and corporate sponsored mainstream media is doing all they can to assist their Congressional stock monkeys.  The day before Thanksgiving, CBS 60 minutes invited the American people into the home of Eric Cantor, the man who sponsored two of the disastrous trade agreements that the Obama administration just shoved through Congress shortly before Thanksgiving.

    Then we had Pete Sessions blathering to the people of the 32nd U.S. Congressional District of Texas about how those trade agreements were going to “support” jobs in Texas–over 64,000 of them in his District.  If you weren’t listening carefully to Sessions BS, you might have misunderstood him to say that he created 64,000 jobs in his district.

    The Economic Policy Institute estimates that the agreement with Korea (just one of three trade agreements) which is expected to be the largest trade deal since NAFTA, will increase the US trade deficit by $16.7 billion and displace 159,000 US jobs within the first seven years after it takes effect.

    Those who want to know what a good job that Pete Sessions has done, should ask the children who live in Dallas county what they think of his leadership.  What has Mr. Sessions done for them?

    The majority of the people in the 32nd district, located in Dallas County, are not doing so well–especially our children.  The annual report on the health and quality of life of Dallas County’s children was out a week ago.  The report titled “Beyond ABC: Assessing Children’s Health in Dallas County” states 18 percent of all children in the county are uninsured. That’s more than twice the national average.

    More than twice the national average of children are uninsured here in Dallas County and 37% of the children in the city of Dallas alone live in poverty–that’s a whooping 192,500 children–enough children to fill the Cowboy Stadium twice.  WHAT ABOUT THEM, PETE, WHAT HAVE YOU DONE FOR THEM?

     

     

    Hey boss, I’m trying to pull up by my bootstraps, but they just ain’t there any more. They plumb fell off after using them so much for the past 30 years.  

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    But in all of the BS swirling around as these political jackasses work to defend their indefensible behavior and votes against the people, no one did it quite as well as Joe Barton–remember the guy who apologized to BP and still was re-elected?  Well his BS reached new heights.  His explanation to his constituents of why sending jobs overseas is a good thing is priceless, but no less priceless than the reaction of a Daily Kos blogger, Ministry of Truth who wrote in response to Barton’s comment. Rep. Barton:     ”If we’re going to have a free society and a free market you have to give people the option to locate outside the United States.”  Well it remains to be seen if the voters in Joe Barton’s district will be as stupid as they were in 2010 and vote for him again.

    ” .  .  . What would you rather have? Free markets for multinational corporations to exploit, or jobs in America?

        Yes, in a free society where gay people can’t marry, women can’t make decisions about their own bodies and workers don’t have the right to collectively bargain, at least we can take comfort in the fact that we have free markets! Hallelujah, Lord be praised! Watching our jobs get shipped overseas is worth it as long as markets are free. Corporations are people, my friend, and their freedom trickles down to you in the form of cheap products at Walmart that you can’t afford because your Walmart wages are so low you need foodstamps to survive. But you are supposed to pull yourself up by your own bootstraps, so this shouldn’t be a big deal, because the bootstrap company you used to work for closed down their plant in America and moved to India, and now the bootstraps you need are available at Walmart for a low, low price. . . . “  SOURCE

     

    Proclaim the Queen!

      Big Turnout for the Vote in Egypt–Egyptians Flock to the Polls

      November 28, 2011 in Egypt

      In spite of all the fear mongering to the contrary, the Egyptians has a much larger than expected turnout for their first post- Mubarak election.

      The election, due to run through to mid-January, is a test for the credibility of Egypt’s generals who have struggled to deal with social unrest and growing pressure for a quick handover to civilian rule.

      The army said it would not allow foreigners to monitor the vote but seems to have backed down, allowing groups such as NDI, The Carter Centre, the International Republican Institute and South African, Turkish, Polish and Danish groups to take part. Alongside 300 foreign civil society representatives are 25,000 accredited monitors and thousands more concerned citizens who have pledged to alert the organizers to abuses.

      Monitors Without Borders said the turnout was the biggest in six decades, and was accompanied by a flurry of citizen activism on social networks and YouTube, where people were uploading examples of violations.

      MORE AT AL ARABIYA NEWS

      Proclaim the Queen!

        Small glimpses of the war with its walking wounded–arrows to the heart

        November 28, 2011 in 2012 Elections, Afghan War, Iraq

        We never hear the full unembellished story of the real cost of the Iraq War in our corporate sponsored media. In fact, those who do try to the tell the truth of it are often accused of being “unpatriotic”  or of exaggerating the enormity of the sin that has been committed in our name by those whom we elected to represent us.  We only get brief passing glimpses into the into the depths of the destruction of humanity that has taken place and continues to take place in Iraq and Afghanistan. But even these small glimpses are enough to make a real human being weep at the sorrowful waste and destruction of so many lives. We Americans should do more than weep. We should start in 2012 by voting every single candidate out of office who supported the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in any way.  If you don’t support war then stop voting for people who do and right now that includes at least 75% of Congress.

          900,000 Widows 

        In just the past week I’ve been exposed twice to two such glimpses and both images haunt me.  In fact, that is one of the reasons I’m sharing these glimpses with you–so I don’t have to bear this knowledge alone.   One was a photo of many Iraqi widows.  Beneath the photo was the caption “900,000 widows”.  Imagine 900,000 broken hearts.  Imagine hundreds of thousands of women and children–almost a million human beings cast into a lifetime of abject poverty because of the greed of a few men–most of them from the U.S. Congress and Wall Street. That is what has happened in Iraq–the creation of untold misery for at least a million human beings–most of them women and children.

        The study by Los Angeles-based Relief International found that about 10 percent of the estimated 15 million women who live in Iraq are widows. Among them, 59 percent have lost their husbands during the U.S.-led war.” A simple math based on the AP summary of the study reveals the following: 10 percent of 15 million is 1.5 million. 59 percent of 1.5 million is almost 900,000. 900,000 married men, one may conclude, have died or been killed since 2003. Add to this equation untold number of unmarried men, women, and children who perished during the war.

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        Murder has become the path of upward mobility for our Children.

        Just this morning I read another arrow to the heart story in the Texas Observer by Josh Rosenblatt titled “Coming Home”. One phrase from it that has lingered in the front hall of my mind: ” . . .Like so many young people, they enlisted not out of any sense of duty or righteousness, but for the promise of $20,000 a year and a free college education.  They signed up for a way out.”  How pitiful is that?  We have allowed greedy swine to take control of our government and represent us and this is what they have created for us–an America where the path to opportunity for the majority of our young people is murder.  Eugene Ionesco could not have written a more absurd or cynical plot.

        The article told of a story where a young American soldier who writes his family about discovering and disarming an IED planted on an Afghani family farm.  Rejecting cliches about patriotism and heroism, the young man admits that the impoverished farm owner who was dragged off to prison by American soldiers as a result of his efforts probably planted that IED because the Taliban had either given him an ultimatum or offered him more money than he could refuse.  Circumstances beyond that farmer’s control–war, poverty, history–had left him with no other option, the same way that circumstances beyond the young American soldier’s control had left him with no option but to enslist.

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        ILWQ COMMENTS

        Isn’t it time that we started creating better options for our children than murder?

        This much I know:  Unless the majority of the 99% are willing to turn their backs on the majority of incumbents currently in the US Congress and run for office and/or campaign for Independents from the 99% who are  running for office in 2012, we will get nothing but more of the same.

        If the current members of Congress haven’t shown you this by now, then you are asleep.

        They will never change.

        They must be replaced. And as many of them as possible.

        And if you don’t like war then stop voting for either a Democrat or a Republican because all you have to do is look at the voting records and their stock portfolios to see how much they approve of it.

        Proclaim the Queen!

          Listen carefully to what Politicians like Pete Sessions claim about job creation

          November 27, 2011 in 2012 Elections, Jobs

          Consider Pete Sessions comments shortly after the passage of the three Trade Agreements this fall.

          “I applaud the House’s approval of three job-creating agreements that will stimulate our economy by allowing manufacturers to expand their exports of American-made goods with important trading partners. Now more than ever, our economy needs this kind of growth.

          “Eliminating trade barriers through these FTAs will place the United States on a level playing field with our foreign competitors and boost the creation of much-needed jobs across the country and North Texas.  According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, exports directly support 467, 305 jobs in Texas – including 64,881 jobs in the 32nd Congressional District.  With unemployment 9.1 percent nationally and 8.5 percent in Texas, passage of these long-pending trade agreements that could create approximately 250,000 new jobs is welcome news.”

          Pete Sessions

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          Sounds great, doesn’t it?  It translates even better if you hear it instead of read it because this is what you will register as “the truth.” :  ”These three trade agreements are just great!  Why they are going to create 467,305 jobs in Texas and 64,881 jobs alone in the 32nd Congressional District.  You better vote for Pete Sessions because he is a great job creator.”

          ______________________________________________

          If this happens, then you’ve been had because the truth is:

          No, the three trade agreements will not create 467, 305 jobs in Texas.

          No, the three trade agreements will not create 64,881 jobs in the 32nd Congressional District.

          As a matter of fact, the three trade agreements will likely not create a single job in the USA.

          It is much more likely that these three trade agreement will, as The Economic Policy Institute tells us, kill hundreds of thousands of more jobs just like NAFTA did.

          _______________________________________________

          I don’t know what source Mr. Sessions used for his statement about 467,305 jobs in Texas or the 64,881 jobs in the 32nd district, but his quote:  ”According to the  U.S. Chamber of Commerce. . .”   came from   a Key Vote Letter Supporting H.R. 3078, 3079, 3080 and 2832 that the Chamber of Commerce sent to all members of Congress prior to their vote on these trade agreements in October of 2011.  Included in their coercive attempt to influence Congress, was this unsubstantiated claim that all three trade agreements would create 250,000 jobs for Americans. (Do members of Congress even ask about sources any more? The fact is that many of them don’t think either. They just accept the propaganda and disinformation that corporate owned media feed them without even questioning it. There is no proof anywhere that these trade agreements will create 250,000 jobs ever.)

          Now just two months later, Pete Sessions is telling us that the Korean Free Trade Agreement will “support” (a weasel word that does not mean the same as “create”) 467, 305 jobs in Texas alone – including 64,881 jobs in the 32nd Congressional District. Notice he does not say that it will create jobs but if you do not read carefully, you are left with the impression that the trade agreements will create half a million job and 64,811 in the 32nd District.  That’s a bold-faced piece of disinformation, if not an outright lie. And it is intentional propaganda on the part of Sessions–intended to mislead.  False promises of empty hope that will never come to fruition. Sounds good, though, doesn’t it? But when called to task for his misrepresentation of the truth, Sessions can always claim that he didn’t say that 64,811 jobs would be created in the 32nd district–only that they would be “supported.”  Listen carefully to what these word masters are saying as they twist the message at every turn.

              _______________________________________________________

          Elected officials like Pete Sessions voted (just with the Korean Trade Agreement alone) to approve sending 159,000 American jobs overseas and to raise the deficit $16 billion dollars.  Furthermore they all had this information before they cast their votes.  They knew what they were doing and they didn’t give a damn.  They did it because, as Wall Street investors, this trade agreement means more money in their pockets.  The Economic Policy Institute (a source a great deal more reliable than the Chamber of Commerce) estimates that the agreement with Korea, which is expected to be the largest trade deal since NAFTA, will increase the US trade deficit by $16.7 billion and displace 159,000 US jobs within the first seven years after it takes effect.

          U.S. Job Creation from the Korean Free Trade Agreement is about as likely as it was from NAFTA. Learn from history folks–not the hyperbole BS that politicians like Pete Sessions feeds you.

          __________________________________________________________

          Here is the Final Kicker:  Even if the BS were true, it is still not good enough:  250,000 jobs over a period of five to seven years when we need at least 10 million jobs now.  Congress needs to get on the fast track for job creation if they want to return in 2013.

          Let’s just say purely for the sake of argument here that these trade agreements actually did, over a period five to seven years create 250,000 jobs for Americans.

          SO WHAT!  We need people in Washington who can do better than that.  We have over 14 million people who are currently out of work.  250,000 new jobs over a period of five to seven years is not even enough to keep people’s heads above water.

          Proclaim the Queen!

            Job Creation #1 Priority

            November 27, 2011 in 2012 Elections, American Spring 2012

            OCCUPY CONGRESS IN 2012!

            As an Independent candidate for the 32nd U.S. Congressional District of Texas, I’m currently writing my responses to issues that I consider important.  Unlike Congress, with their pseudo issues and fake “problems” such as Social Security and deficit ceilings, job creation will be at the top of the list.

            Job Creation Today

            Job Creation has been on the back-burner for elected officials in Washington DC for at least the past 10 years.  In fact, instead of creating jobs, they are destroying jobs for Americans. The watered down solutions offered by the Obama administration are almost as worthless as what the Republicans have not even bothered to offer.  In fact, after three years of Obama’s leadership, we are still near the Zero job growth benchmark set by George Bush during his eight year term.

            What we have in the USA today as we near the end of 2011, is an absurd situation where banks and financial institutions are sitting on at least $3 trillion dollars–much of which was lent to them by the American people.  They are hoarding this money like misers. The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer via the corrupt system of Wall Street whereby enormous wealth has been created over the past three years–not by producing goods and services, but by cutting costs and passing the savings along to the wealthy shareholders as dividend payments.

            And how does a Wall Street corporation cut costs?  They cut costs by firing workers and selling off assets.  Thus while millions of Americans have been losing their jobs and their homes, members of our 44% millionaire Wall Street invested Congress have been getting richer and richer–Democrat and Republicans alike.  Wall Street operates exactly on the same principles as a multilevel marketing level pyramid scheme. Wall Street is a huge scam run by the rich for the benefit of the rich.

            Pete Sessions, the Republican incumbent for the 32nd US Congressional District numbers among the millionaire Congressional members who have gotten richer on the backs of working Americans.  In 2008, Sessions reported a net worth of $3,376,000.  One year later in 2009 he reported a net worth of $4,904,000.  Thus in the time period in which 7.3 million Americans  lost their jobs, Mr. Sessions made $1,528,000 off his Wall Street investments.

            The money that Wall Street makes and pays to their shareholders like Sessions primarily comes from corporations cutting costs by firing workers and selling off assets. It is no hyperbole whatsoever to say that Sessions and others like him in Congress are literally making fortunes off the backs of working Americans who lose their jobs.  Think of it this way:  if you lost a job in 2008 or 2009, no doubt part of what was once your salary was given to people like Pete Sessions as well as the salaries of the CEOs of these corporations.  In addition, your taxes help to pay Mr. Sessions $174,000 salary and his government sponsored health care.

            Is this the kind of representation you want, someone who profits off the backs of the majority,  or do you want someone who will make the best decisions for the majority of those in the 32nd district?   That is the question that the people of my district will decide, but one thing is certain:  I plan to make sure that the majority of them are fully aware of what they are choosing and how it affects the lives of the people in their community.

            Job Creation Solution #1  REPLACE CONGRESS IN 2012

            Nothing of any significance will happen until we stop listening to their promises and replace Congressional Wall Street Millionaires–forget about party. There is no daylight of difference between the leadership of the Democrat Party and the leadership of the Republican/Tea Party.

            First of all, until we remove those from Congress who continue to benefit from the current corrupt situation whereby their personal stock portfolios increase from the job losses of Americans, don’t expect any significant change.  I ask you to think:  where is their incentive to push job creation?  There is certainly no incentive for at least 44% of Congress such as Pete Sessions who are millionaires. Their inaction on job creation bills is testimony enough for where they really stand.

            So the first step is to remove these Wall Street profiteers from office. Stop thinking that appealing to them will change their behavior.  How much more proof of their self-serving corruption do we need?

            Proclaim the Queen!

              Of course Congressional members don’t mind Wall Street Corporations Not paying taxes

              November 26, 2011 in Wall Street

              At least 44% of Congress (the millionaires) get paid regardless–besides, although they like to gripe at the 35% income tax they are supposed to pay, I doubt that any of them have EVER paid 35% of their income in taxes–EVER!

              ExxonMobil numbers among the  10 companies that have the most untaxed foreign income.  If you want to see the information in brackets that follows regarding the number of Congressional members who own this stock, you can go to Open Secrets

              1. General Electric (GE)  [106 members of Congress own stock in GE - 52 Democrats and 54 Republicans]

              Untaxed foreign profit: $94 billion
              Tax Haven: US
              Strategy: An army of 1000 former IRS accountants keeps GE’s taxes near zero

              2. Pfizer (PFE) [63 members of Congress own stock in Pfizer- 31 Democrats and 32 Republicans]
              Untaxed foreign profit: $48.2 billion
              Tax Havens: Global
              Strategy: HC Industry keeps more profits overseas than any other industry

              3. Merck (MRK) [38 members of Congress own stock in Merck.
              Untaxed foreign profit: $40.4 billion
              Tax Havens: 140 countries
              Strategy: Used more than $9 billion from abroad in 2008 tax-free to finance Schering-Plough acquisition

              4. Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) [ 52 members of Congress own stock in this corporation]
              Untaxed foreign profit: $37 billion
              Tax Havens: Choose from 60 countries
              Strategy: 48 consecutive years of dividend increases.

              5. Exxon Mobil (XOM) [51 members of Congress own stock in Exxon Mobil]
              Untaxed foreign profit: $35 billion
              Tax Havens: Does most of its business on international soil
              Strategy: 80% of the company’s 2009 earnings came from outside the U.S.

              Proclaim the Queen!

                Make pension funds whole from the crimes committed by the financial industry.

                November 26, 2011 in Class War, Wall Street

                Forget about taxes, start fining these jackasses and sending them to jail!

                Jonathan Tasini of Working Life  has a promising solution to replace the one that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and state organized labor leaders are exploring to tap into the private and public pension funds of workers to help pay for an array of constructions projects, including the overhaul of the Tappan Zee Bridge. [What part of using people's pension funds (their own money) to pay their salaries don't these people think that workers will understand?  How absurd do their thefts from the 99% have to become before people start using pepper spray on them? Really!  How much more damned obvious do the crimes of the 1% have to become?]

                Tasini’s first suggestion is good.

                How about demanding passage of the “millionaire’s tax”, or as Mr. Tasini  likes to refer to it:  the “modest dues to live in a functioning society” bill? Because, if we had that tax, and a more progressive tax system in this state, then, duh, there would be public money for…rebuilding bridges. for example. The governor currently opposes demanding that the richest one percent pay a little more.  Poor babies.

                But Tasini’s second suggestion is even better.

                Second thing: public pension funds in New York state ALONE lost $100 billion because of the financial crimes on Wall Street. There is a bill in the state legislature, the Lancman Libous bill, which both the New York state comptroller and the New York City comptroller support, because it would enable the pension funds to sue to recover billions that were stolen from the pension funds during the financial collapse. Why not demand that tapping workers’ pensions funds be tied to supporting a law that would make those very same pension funds whole from the crimes committed by the financial industry?

                Proclaim the Queen!

                  Rich investors may turn out to be the best friends the 99% have

                  November 26, 2011 in Class War, Wall Street

                  For example, there is is Hassan Heikal

                  Hassan Heikal . . . who? Heikal is the chief executive of EFG Hermes–the premier investment bank in the Middle East.  He wants to ease the austerity sweeping the world. He does not like austerity and finds it disastrous. Heikal has a solution that will take $5 to $10 trillion out of te pockets of the wealthiest people in the world and put that money towards halting the massive hurt descending on people because of the austerity obsession.

                  Read Heikal’s solution is in, of all places, The Financial Times:  A tweet from Tahrir Square–time to tax the rich.

                  Proclaim the Queen!

                    Keep it simple: Think about what Mayors all over the USA are doing.

                    November 26, 2011 in Class War

                    They are criminalizing non-violent political dissent.

                    And the USA is supposedly a democracy.

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                    ILWQ COMMENTS

                    On December 15, 1791 the first ten Amendments (Bill of Rights) to the U.S. Constitution were ratified.

                    All Americans should care that the leaders of our state and local governments continue to ride roughshod over the rights guaranteed by the first amendment:

                    AMENDMENT I- Freedom of Religion, speech and the Press, Right of Assembly and Petition

                    Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the fee exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom os speech, or of the press, or the right of people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

                    Proclaim the Queen!