The ascension (apotheosis?) of every GOP 'President' is inevitably accompanied by much GOP salivating over the prospects of getting their greedy, crooked mitts on your Social Security. Thus it was just over eight years ago when George W. Bush assumed (and I do mean 'assumed') the highest office in the land. Rest assured, despite the financial implosions of late, the GOP still plots to rob you blind, screw you silly and leave you a worthless slug on the night stand!
The GOP licked its greedy chops as the stupidest man, the grossest idiot since Warren Harding raised his hand and dared to swear on a holy book! The same gang of mendacious robber barons who made fortunes short-selling stocks on 911, profited from mass murder, and, later, plunged this nation into a new 'Great Depression' saw in the rise of George W. Bush another opportunity to steal your Social Security and buy Baltic Avenue with it!
Unlike GOP's 'trickle down' theory --pie in the sky but only if you are already very, very wealthy --Social Security did precisely what it was intended to do! It lived up to its billing, perhaps exceeded it! It is endangered not because it failed but because it succeeded! It is targeted now because the upper one percent of the population which owns more that about 95 percent of the rest of us combined is eager to seize control of ALL of the nation's wealth. Keep in mind --these are the arrogant bankers and snot nosed whiz kids who short sold stocks on 911!
Social Security is the bright spot. It has maybe some mild financial problems, several decades out, and here we are—he [Bush] wants a crisis there, partly to distract from the very real crises in other places, and there you go.It was not sufficient that GOP policies had enriched only the very, very rich. As a result, just one percent of the nation now owns more than some 95 percent of the rest of us combined! But the greedy bastards wanted to own all of it! They wanted your retirement! They wanted the monies you paid into Social Security over the course of your lifetime! Joe the Plumber recently called Social Security a joke --not because he understands why it is coveted by the GOP. He is merely the recipient of the 'memo'. Stealing your Social Security is still very high on the GOPs list of great things it wants to fuck up permanently! We should take Joe and Palin seriously. The world is endangered by its idiots.
AMY GOODMAN: Paul Krugman, can you explain how Social Security works? Because it’s not just President Bush. If he was raising questions about it with a little megaphone on the steps of the White House, it would not have the kind of effect it was having without all of the media, it seems, amplifying the idea that Social Security is broken. It’s bankrupt.
PAUL KRUGMAN: Right. And of course, that’s really a question about the media, not about Social Security. Social Security is a program which has been traditionally run. It looks like a retirement fund, and it is not exactly. What it really is is a government program with a dedicated tax. We take the payroll tax and it’s used to pay benefits to retirees. And 20-plus years ago, the commission led by Alan Greenspan said, you know, we are going to have this problem as the baby boomers reach retirement age. We will have a higher ratio of retirees to workers, and we better get ready for it. Social Security, the payroll tax was increased. There were some other things, a small rise in the retirement age set in motion. So that Social Security would run a surplus, which would be used to accumulate a trust fund, and this would tithe us over, some ways into the aging of the population. And that on its own accounting is working just fine. I mean, one of the things that we need to know is that the estimates of the day at which the trust fund runs out, just keep on receding further into the future, because the program is doing so well at running surpluses. --Paul Krugman, Economist, Published Comments on Democxracy Now
Joe the Plumber may be the GOP 'plug in' du jour! They act in consort like the Borg. They are set up in 'cells' like the 'terrorists' they would have us believe they hate so much. The GOP is not loyal to the principles of our founding; GOP attack dogs attack 'liberals', progressives, and the just plain ornery folk--like ME! And for all the wrong reasons! Because of this 'backward thinking', these misplaced values and priorities we keep losing unwinnable wars of naked aggression, wars that should never have begun in the first place. Because of it, we are now financially and morally bankrupt! Now --the GOP wants a bailout: YOUR Social Security!
Now --what if the GOP had succeeded already? Simply --the Social Security trust fund would be collapsed and millions of seniors would be lucky to find a place to set up a tent! Let's put the GOP's fraudulent scheme to steal Social Security into perspective. Social Security routinely runs a surplus, call it a profit if you will! It is this 'surplus' that is coveted by Wall Street! They want to plunder your monies as Bush plunder the taxes you pay every year as a good citizen! The GOP and Wall Street barons want to 'speculate' with the only retirement that millions will ever have! They want to enrich themselves on the interest and/or returns! Do you really think these greedy, latter-day Gordan Gecko's have your interests at heart? Not a frickin' chance!During George W. Bush's first term I wrote and posted the following on NPR's infamous 'How's Bush Doing' board:
The crisis in 2015 -2018 won't be Social Security! It will be, rather, the utter bankruptcy of the United States and the profligate, incompetent policies of George Bush!Now --if you are under 20 and still believe yourself immortal, my remarks will mean little to you. But here they are: knowing what we now now about the crookedness, the utter incompetence of an administration that I believe betrayed the people and their Constitution, aren't you glad we did NOT entrust those bastards with farming out the only retirement that millions might ever see to the greedy, shallow, mendacious liars that run Wall Street with their fascist buddies in DC?
You Give Me Real Money and I Will Give You a Worthless Piece of Paper! It was said at the time that the Wall Street experts would actually turn a profit on YOUR money. Oh! I get it! I give you my money and you give me a worthless piece of paper! Uh Huh! I would have liked to write that time and events proved me correct but, in fact, the crash happened even sooner than I expected or predicted. Anyway --aren't you glad Bush did not steal your money? It was said that the experts on Wall Street could 'invest' your monies. Sure! So can I Send me a check? I have lots of places I could put YOUR money! Fact is, you don't need no steenkin experts! Everyone can set up private accounts while you still have a job, that is before the GOP economy crashed and burned. My advice at the time was:
...you can still have Social Security to fall back on should GOP policies utterly destroy the stock market.Keep in mind that I wrote that italicized sentence in 2003. I saw what the GOP had in mind and what has, in fact, come to pass. Given the global financial debacle, what logical rationale is there for incurring an additional debt of some 4.5 trillion dollars? Would it have anything to do with the fact that the truly elite (just one percent of the US population) are currently picking up the bargains and lickin' their greedy chops. They are as we write feasting upon the carcasses!
The Cure'll Kill Ya!
Right wing assaults on Social Security are of the 'stealth' kind, advertised as efforts to 'save' Social Security! As we would say in Texas: "Wah hale! The cure'll kill ya''! The assumption that the GOP wants to save Social Security or the retirement of this nation's elderly in ANY form is naive. As much was admitted by smarmy Dick Armey who admitted to Wall Street Week that he had been trying to abolish Social Security for the last thirty years.
There are several things wrong with "Privatization" in other words "corporatization":
- Why 'corporatize Social Security when it is, in fact, working just fine as it is'? If I should want a 'provate account' what is preventing me from doing so? When millions have recently lost every penny in 'private accounts', what --please tell me --is the attraction they hold? What raison d'etre exists but to further enrich the cronies on Wall Street?
- All government need do to fix Social Security is to rescind the profligate tax cuts since Ronald Reagan, tax cuts which failed to create a single new job, failed to increase tax revenues, failed to increase capital expenditures and expansions as promised by "supply side" bullshit!
- "Privatization", in fact, 'corporatization', is just GOPSPEAK for you give me real money which will enrich ONLY Wall Street insiders and I will give you a worthless piece of paper!
- Besides --Social Security may very well be the only government program that is currently turning a "profit"!
Social Security was an easy target of conservative demagogues. (I know --that's redundant) Slimy ilk like Rush Limbaugh are not merely liars, they attack reason itself, the very processes by which fact and truth are determined. Latter day "conservatives" think differently and, therefore, arrive at false conclusions for the wrong reasons. Listening to Limbaugh, one is tempted to believe that "two" versions of the human brain have evolved. But take heart --when "God" passed out brains, "we" got the version that works. Limbaugh and his adoring ilk got the one that will be recalled, version 13.666! Those who would make a bargain with Satan will have to live --and die --with a really, really bad deal! During the so-called "Republican Revolution", when the GOP staged a budget stand-off with Clinton, it was clear that this new breed of so-called "conservatives", in truth, subversive radicals, viewed the long practiced art of compromise as synonymous with defeat. Their inflexibility backfired! Clinton won, leading to the eventual and much deserved disgrace and downfall of Newt Gringrich. Would that he had taken the GOP with him into hell!Someone forgot to place a convenient revolver on his nightstand! But Newt would not have done the right thing.Rush and his ilk have popularized fallacy, celebrated anti-intellectualism, and sought to make it 'cool' to be stupid! Limbaugh wallows in sloppy thinking and appeals to our most ignoble motives. He personifies demagoguery, oozes duplicity! He is smarm itself. Hearing Limbaugh, one does one's best to suppress the urge to puke or walk on all-fours!
Stupidity is the devil. Look in the eye of a chicken and you'll know. It's the most horrifying, cannibalistic, and nightmarish creature in this world. --Werner HerzogHerzog has not yet looked into the eyes of a gopper, more terrifying than chickens! It may sound oxymoronic to speak of 'intelligent conservatives', neither intelligent nor truly conservative. Real conservatives would never have tolerated the astronomical deficits run up by Mssrs Reagan and Bush Jr. There must surely be some conservatives still smart enough to understand that the demagogic demonization of 'liberals, liberals' leads inexorably to a one-party, fascist, totalitarian state. Therefore, we must conclude that that is, in fact, the hidden agenda. They only pretend to be stupid and, admittedly, they do a good job of it.
Conservatives prefer a one party, fascist state in which the office of President is replaced with 'Der Fuhrer'! Will they be so enthusiastic 'when the last law [is] was down' and Der Fuhrer turns 'round on them? A fanatic GOP 'fuhrer' need only cite Justice Oliver Wendall Holmes who said "Three generations of imbeciles are enough" to justify the round up, encampment and wholesale disposal of people they don't like!
Save the children
Throughout the conservative movement and the ranks of Limbaugh's mis-informed minions there is an appalling ignorance of history that betrays this nation's utter failure to educate its young. Texas is the best example and most notable. Under Bush Jr and his successor, Rick Perry, Texas now beats out Mississippi for DEAD LAST in 'high school graduations'.
Failing to graduate high school is a guarantee that you will lead a life of poverty or crime or both! It is not coincidental that Texas --thanks to the GOP --is called the 'gulag state of Texas for the growth of its corporate run prison system, in truth a fascist gulag that is paid handsomely from the public trough to warehouse the millions of children who were --in fact --left behind to starve, fail and be warehoused by the fascists in Texas. To save these children, I urge that Texas be invaded and occupied until a responsible and competent government can lock up the current fascist regime and restore the 'rule of law' there. There is an outrageous lack of outrage about this corporate take-over and occupation of Texas. What can be said of a population so addled, misinformed, uniformed and soporific that it doesn't even notice when it has been screwed without so much as a tip on the table? Does anyone in Texas care that their state has been stolen and is now run by Nazis? Clue for Texans: the corporate fat cats in skyscrapers in New York and Houston do not give a shit about you nor Hank Williams nor Larry Gatlin! You've been had! Wake the fuck up!
Find the Cockroach
Find the Cockroach
The American psychologist tasked with preventing Nazi war criminals from offing themselves before they could be duly hanged, said that "evil" was the utter lack of empathy! You find precisely that throughout the GOP rank and file --Rush Limbaugh's adoring throng. These 'people' defended torture and and state-sponsored murder at Abu Ghraib! They are short-sighted. They will not understand that if anyone can be victimized by unrestrained state power, so too, can they! No one is safe as long as a fascist holds so much as the office of dog catcher!
Tomorrow Belongs to Me!
People have an unrealistic idea of "evil"! Apparently, evil is a cartoon caricature --gleaming eyes, horns, pitchfork, snarls, drooling, and incantations to Satan, Bush Jr, or the Skull and Bones. No! Evil is Reinhard Heydrich conducting a gourmet luncheon meeting of Reich bureaucrats about how best to make legal the mass murder of European jews! Evil is Dick Cheney having a meeting with this 'Energy Task Force' and carving up the oil fields of Iraq before Bush's 911 would give them the pretext to invade! On both occasions, I believe, a quite civilized lunch and coffee were served amid veddy, veddy witty conversation! As Hannah Arendt said, evil is banal! Had Heydrich and his Nazis succeeded, they would have gloated, patted each other on the back! What jolly good fellows they all were! They would have shared a few brews and toasted the 'Final Solution'. Heil Mein Fuhrer! They might have sang: Deutschland Uber Alles, The Nazi National Anthem or Tomorrow Belongs to Me! They were, after all, just good ol' boys ridding the world of 'vermin'. Or --they were all just good ol' boys hoping to get the terrorists from between them and 'all that oil!"
The GOP celebration of shortsighted, pyrrhic victories will in the longer term destroy America if it has not does so already. Certainly --the America that I knew is already destroyed. The Bill of Rights means very little even now with Obama's victory. I have yet to hear a resounding denunciation from this administration with regard to Bush's assault upon the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. America without the Bill of Rights is nothing! Without the Bill of Rights, the US is just another huge, unfeeling, corporate dominated bureaucracy!
Those who do not remember the past are condemned to relive it!--Georges Santayana, American PhilosopherWe are, thus, condemned! Humankind has been at war since our evolution beyond the "hunter/gatherer" stage. Since someone decided that the land upon which he grew a crop was his, war has been incessant. Because "winners" procreate, the "war" gene is reinforced over generations. That explains why history repeats itself and 'facts' mean very little or nothing at all! DNA will trump reason and facts every time. Those most enthralled by inherited and irrational war mongering are of the same demographic segment who would discount evolution on religious or superstitious grounds. The 'conservative' hostility towards intellectuals is blind to obvious parallels with other fascist states past and present.
Demagogue: One who preaches doctrines he knows to be untrue to men he knows to be idiots.And Voltaire said:
--H. L. Mencken
Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities!
Voltaire's statement is not just a well-phrased aphorism chosen because it sounds 'literary'. It could be stated as a mathematical formula when 'atrocities' are actually counted and made a 'statistic', when popular myths and/or outright lies and falsehoods are identified and correlated demographically! Think of it! With such a formula, an enlightened state could identify those states and territories most likely to nurture a state-sponsored mass murder, a state sponsored torture, a state sponsored war of naked aggression as we have most recently witnessed by the United States of America. My country! May God help us all! At last, I recommend one read Voltaire. When Voltaire learned of Catholic atrocities in Toulouse, he literally papered Europe with his polemics --so outraged was he! Voltaire was no effete 'scholoar'. Today, he would be a kick ass blogger, an activist, a gonzo, counter-culture journalist like Hunter Thompson, or, more likely, an acerbic latter-day H. L. Mencken pooh-poohing fundies down in Dayton! He would be a thorn in the GOP's sorry hide. He would skewer the liars on K-Street and Wall Street! He would laugh at the devil himself and wither him with a phrase!