Article 43


Sunday, September 28, 2008

Shock Doctrine


Business, of course, needs consumers to carry on spending in order to make money, so a way had to be found to persuade households to do their patriotic duty. The method chosen was simple. Whip up a colossal housing bubble, convince consumers that it makes sense to borrow money against the rising value of their homes to supplement their meagre real wage growth and watch the profits roll in.

As they did - for a while. Now its payback time and the mood could get very ugly. Americans, to put it bluntly, have been conned. They have been duped by a bunch of serpent-tongued hucksters who packed up the wagon and made it across the county line before a lynch mob could be formed.

- Steve Watson - Infowars

Check out LET’S PLAY WALL STREET BAILOUT on You Tube, then read the three articles below.


Now Is The Time to Resist Wall Street’s Shock Doctrine

By Naomi Klein
September 22, 2008

I wrote The Shock Doctrine in the hopes that it would make us all better prepared for the next big shock. Well, that shock has certainly arrived, along with gloves-off attempts to use it to push through radical pro-corporate policies (which of course will further enrich the very players who created the market crisis in the first place...).

The best summary of how the right plans to use the economic crisis to push through their policy wish list comes from Former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich. On Sunday, Gingrich laid out 18 POLICY PRESCRIPTIONS for Congress to take in order to “return to a Reagan-Thatcher policy of economic growth through fundamental reforms.” In the midst of this economic crisis, he is actually demanding the repeal of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, which would lead to further deregulation of the financial industry. Gingrich is also calling for reforming the education system to allow “competition” (a.k.a. vouchers), strengthening border enforcement, cutting corporate taxes and his signature move: allowing offshore drilling.

It would be a grave mistake to underestimate the right’s ability to use this crisis—created by deregulation and privatization—to demand more of the same. Don’t forget that Newt Gingrich’s 527 organization, American Solutions for Winning the Future, is still riding the wave of success from its offshore drilling campaign, “Drill Here, Drill Now!” Just four months ago, offshore drilling was not even on the political radar and now the U.S. House of Representatives has passed supportive legislation. Gingrich is holding AN EVENT this Saturday, September 27 that will be broadcast on satellite television to shore up public support for these controversial policies.

What Gingrich’s wish list tells us is that the dumping of private debt into the public coffers is only stage one of the current shock. The second comes when the debt crisis currently being created by this bailout becomes the excuse to privatize social security, lower corporate taxes and cut spending on the poor. A President McCain would embrace these policies willingly. A President Obama would come under huge pressure from the think tanks and the corporate media to abandon his campaign promises and embrace austerity and “free-market stimulus.”

We have seen this many times before, in this country and around the world. But here’s the thing: these opportunistic tactics can only work if we let them. They work when we respond to crisis by regressing, wanting to believe in “strong leaders” - even if they are the same strong leaders who used the September 11 attacks to push through the Patriot Act and launch the illegal war in Iraq.

So let’s be absolutely clear: there are no saviors who are going to look out for us in this crisis. CERTAINLY NOT Henry Paulson, former CEO of Goldman Sachs, one of the companies that will benefit most from his proposed bailout (which is actually a stick up). The only hope of preventing another dose of shock politics is loud, organized GRASSROOTS pressure on all political parties: they have to know right now that after seven years of Bush, Americans are becoming shock resistant.



Bush & McCain Blackmail America With Economic Terrorism

Ferocious fear-mongering rhetoric, possible cancellation of presidential election as financial terrorists threaten Americans with chaos unless power-grabbing bailout bill is passed.

By Paul Joseph Watson
Prison Planet
September 25, 2008

From shying away from even mentioning such terms as recession, unemployment or bank failures, Bush, Bernanke and Paulson are now vigorously invoking the fear of financial meltdown as part of a campaign of economic terror to blackmail the American people into accepting the power-grabbing bailout, while John McCain, who last week said the fundamentals of the economy are strong, is now all but threatening to cancel the election should the proposal not receive swift passage.

Bushs speech last night was a throwback to his March 2003 stump before the invasion of Iraq - replace words like “weapons of mass destruction” with financial panic and the tone of the two is not dissimilar.

Bush rammed home the fear by appealing to people’s personal anxieties.

“More banks could fail, including some in your community. The stock market would drop even more, which would reduce the value of your retirement account. The value of your home could plummet. Foreclosures would rise dramatically,” barked the President.

“And if you own a business or a farm, you would find it harder and more expensive to get credit. More businesses would close their doors, and millions of Americans could lose their jobs.”

Bernanke and Paulson SPEWED SIMILAR RHETORIC during Tuesdays Senate Banking Committee meeting. Compare their dire proclamations with their outright REFUSAL TO EVEN ENTERTAIN THE NOTION OF A RECESSION as little as seven months ago.

Now PAULSON TELLS US THAT PEOPLE SHOULD BE SCARED and that the only solution is for taxpayers to foot the bill to the tune of $700 billion dollars - a number we now learn was simply pulled out of thin air by the Treasury - while the Federal Reserve swallows up all manner of new regulation powers.

It seems that almost overnight these three stooges have gone from behaving like sedated zombies to end-times doomsayers.

Furthermore, John McCain, the man who as recently as last week proclaimed that “the fundamentals of the economy are sound,” is now canceling presidential debates, and some fear greasing the skids for the postponement of the presidential election itself, by insisting he and Obama “return to Washington” in order to put their weight behind the bailout.

As the GEORGE WASHINGTON BLOG NOTES, McCain is basically implying, “Vote for the bailout or Ill pull out of the election.”

The financial terrorism being perpetrated by Bush, McCain, Bernanke, Paulson and the rest of these criminals in threatening Americans with unbridled chaos unless they acquiesce to political demands, and the coordinated ferocity with which it is being delivered, is necessary for the crooks because they are desperate to get the bailout passed before Congress really has a chance to digest exactly what it stands for.

This is what’s called the “shock doctrine,” the accelerated passage of what is essentially dictatorial legislation without proper scrutiny by means of exploiting a temporary state of fear.

This is not just about $700 billion of taxpayers’ money and the continued sacking of the dollar, its about the imposition of a giant new infrastructure of control and regulation on behalf of the private, run for profit, Federal Reserve.

Bush even alluded to it last night, stating that Paulson’s bailout would mean the Federal Reserve would be authorized to “take a closer look at the operations of companies across the financial spectrum.”

But this is merely scratching the surface. As Sen. Jim Bunning, R-Ky., said, “This massive bailout is not a solution. It is financial socialism and it’s un-American. In fact properly defined, one could label it “national socialism, otherwise known as FASCISM."

As professor of economics at New York University Nouriel Roubini framed it, welcome to the United Socialist States of America and “the most radical regime change in global economic and financial affairs in decades.”

The plan was DRAWN UP MONTHS AGO, lying in wait for the right crisis to see it enacted, just as the Patriot Act was prepared well in advance of 9/11.

The Treasury’s FACT SHEET about the bailout states, The Secretary will have the discretion, in consultation with the Chairman of the Federal Reserve, to purchase other assets, “as deemed necessary to effectively stabilize financial markets.”

This gives the government and the Federal Reserve carte blanche to do whatever they want to long as it is done in the name of stabilizing financial markets, they can nationalize any company or industry and use taxpayer money, above and beyond the initial $700 billion, for whatever purpose is deemed necessary, without any oversight. Paulson’s bailout plan is also unreviewable by any court, it will remain in perpetuity.

Paulson’s draft bailout plans says: The Secretary’s authority to purchase mortgage-related assets under this Act shall be limited to $700,000,000,000 outstanding at any one time.

As CHRIS MARTENSON WRITES, “This means that $700 billion is NOT the cost of this dangerous legislation, it is only the amount that can be outstanding at any one time. After, say, $100 billion of bad mortgages are disposed of, another $100 billion can be bought. In short, these four little words assure that there is NO LIMIT to the potential size of this bailout. This means that $700 billion is a rolling amount, not a ceiling.”

“The bill would bar courts from reviewing actions taken under its authority,” reports Bloomberg.

The Bush administration seeks “dictatorial power unreviewable by the third branch of government, the courts, to try to resolve the crisis,” said Frank Razzano, a former assistant chief trial attorney at the Securities and Exchange Commission now at Pepper Hamilton LLP in Washington. “We are taking a huge leap of faith.”

“It sounds like Paulson is asking to be a financial dictator, for a limited period of time,” said historian John Steele Gordon.

REPORTER LARISA ALEXANDROVNA CALLS IT “the final stages of the coup,” noting, “This manufactured crisis is now to be remedied, if the fiscal fascists get their way, with the total transfer of Congressional powers (the few that still remain) to the Executive Branch and the total transfer of public funds into corporate (via government as intermediary) hands.”

The legislation would provide billions to foreign central banks in addition to private foreign banks.

The proposed move represents a total shift of U.S. taxpayers’ funds into the hands of powerful private interests, some of which do not even represent American companies.

The bailout bill represents the most fascist centralization of power in America since 9/11 and the Patriot Act - and many would argue that it even trumps that. The fiscal terrorists hope to ram through their agenda by appealing to peoples fears about the economy, their jobs, their houses and their pensions. But the temporary pain brought on by a Wall Street crash and a severe recession would be nothing compared to the long term death knell that the bailout bill would mean to the free market and economic liberty in America.



The Dumbing-Down of a Nation

On the day of the first presidential debate I think we need to pause over the increasing lack of discernment among the American people; the dumbing-down of our nation. With each passing day we see more and more stupidity being sold to the American people, without so much as a blink from the stupefied nation.

By Anthony Wade
OpEd News
September 26, 2008

Where to start America? Where do we start to examine the lunacy our country has become? Let us start with the notion that helping out poor people is considered socialism and helping out rich people is vitally necessary for the economic health of our nation. I start here because at least the early indications are that someone finally stood up for a minute and said no. For the past eight years we have seen a dramatic reversal of regulation within our financial and housing markets. The mantra from the GOP was that the government needed to get out of the private sector. The reality of course is that without oversight and regulation, greed runs rampant. It is the same reason why for-profits should not be in the business of running vital services for the people of this country. At the end of the day, they only care about money. So fast forward eight years and their greed has come home to roost. The response from the GOP? A 700 billion dollar bailout plan to save the very companies that acted so unscrupulously to begin with. Corporate welfare. The original plan drafted by Paulson called for no oversight whatsoever. Just give me 700 billion and ask no questions. When this was noticed and objected to Paulson relented but insisted that there should not be any punitive measures in what was passed. The translation of that mangling of the English language was that Paulson still wanted CEOs to be able to rape what was left of the companies they looted; the so-called “golden parachutes.” While we are on the subject, why is everyone bowing down to the altar of Paulson when this mess happened on his watch to begin with? While we are on the subject, how come no one is asking why this plan was actually designed months ago, before the collapse yet no one tried to prevent it? While we are on the subject, why hasn’t anyone seriously questioned where they came up with the 700 billion dollar figure to begin with? Oh thats right, we are supposed to be stupid sheep; just give us the 700 billion and ask no questions.

Furthering this stupidity is John McCain. He expects us to believe that for the good of the nation he had to suspend his campaign and dash back to Washington to resolve the crisis. Well, dash back after appearing on a NY news program, having a nice dinner in the city, and a good night’s sleep in Manhattan. When he was finally in route to DC the next day, he discovered that lawmakers had essentially agreed on a bailout agreement, making his stance seem quite foolish and would force him to have to go to that little debate he was supposed to have tonight. Cant have that now can we? So McCain and a small band of GOPers decided to kill the agreement so that this self-perpetuated drama about the debate could continue and so that when an agreement is reached, Johnny McLiar can claim a lions share of the credit. And we are supposed to believe this stupidity? We are supposed to believe that McCain had to suspend his campaign? He couldn’t run untrue attack ads at the same time he was pretending to know something about the economy? Really?

While we are on the subject of McCain, how much longer are we to endure the attack on everything rational and sensible that is Sarah Palin? Everyone was positively gushing about her at the RNC when they saw that she could correctly read a teleprompter but now that the lipstick is wearing thin what are we left with? A woman who thinks that foreign policy experience is being governor of a state that borders Russia? Really? I beg everyone to please WATCH THIS CLIP from her Katie Couric interview. It is a quick snippet where she tries to actually defend her ridiculous Russia comments:

COURIC: You’ve cited Alaska’s proximity to Russia as part of your foreign policy experience. What did you mean by that?

PALIN: That Alaska has a very narrow maritime border between a foreign country, Russia, and on our other side, the land boundary that we have with Canada. It’s funny that a comment like that was—kind of made to—carry—I don’t know, you know? Reporters --

COURIC: Mocked?

PALIN: Yeah, mocked, I guess that’s the word, yeah.

COURIC: Well, explain to me why that enhances your foreign policy credentials.

PALIN: Well, it certainly does because our—our next door neighbors are foreign countries. They’re in the state that I am the executive of. And there in Russia --

COURIC: Have you ever been involved with any negotiations, for example, with the Russians?

PALIN: We have trade missions back and forth. We—we do—it’s very important when you consider even national security issues with Russia as Putin rears his head and comes into the airspace of the United States of America, where—where do they go? It’s Alaska. It’s just right over the border. It is from Alaska that we send those out to make sure that an eye is being kept on this very powerful nation, Russia, because they are right there. They are right next to—to our state.

Is this the person you want with the nuclear codes of this country??? I know eighth grade students who could have answered this question better without any prep. Not to mention this is Katie Couric for heavens sake; itҒs not like she is hard-nosed journalist. I guess that Sean Hannity fluff piece really didnt prepare poor Palin for the pit bull that is Katie. It is time for everyone to stand up and realize that the nomination of Sarah Palin is an insult to the Office of Vice President and somewhere Dan Quayle is laughing his head off.

While we are on the subject of Palin, how did we get to the point in America where a Palin could even be sold to us as a potential candidate? Glad you asked. It started in 2000 with the Rovian ploy of convincing America that they should want a regular guy as president; ya know, a guy you want to have a beer with. When her defenders pimp Palin, they are fond of saying that she is just like you and I. IsnҒt that the problem??? Next time you are out at your local bar or pub, I want you to take a good look around. Are these the people you want trying to figure out how to make sure you have health care? Are these the folks you want negotiating with Iran; or bombing them? Are these the people you want educating your children?

I dont want to have a beer with my president. I want him solving the problems that face this country and the world and I would prefer he be sober when he is trying to figure it all out. I do not want my president to be just like me. I want him to be better than me; preferably a lot better. Preferably a lot smarter. We have had eight years of a national embarrassment. A president who couldnҒt put together a coherent sentence with two hands, a thesaurus and a flashlight. I am relatively certain that if you asked Bush he would say that a thesaurus was a giant reptile that lived millions of years ago.

Jokes aside, shouldnt we expect more of the leader of the free world? Shouldn’t we expect that he be intelligent and not just beer-worthy? Shouldnt we expect that they be more competent than you and I? If not, why aren’t we running for president? I love my friends dearly but would shudder to think of what would happen if they were the President of the United States.

Unfortunately, the other area of extreme deregulation has been the media and that is exactly the vehicle that has been used to drive this dumbing-down process. No one asks decent follow up questions. No one is prepared to dismiss talking points as lies and when they finally do like Campbell Brown of CNN the McCain campaign thinks it is appropriate to publicly denounce her and cancel scheduled appearances. What makes Johnny McBush think he can get away with it? Because he knows the media is nearly all bought and sold by corporate America. In a country where a Fox News is legally allowed to exist and call itself news I should not be surprised. In a country where a clear partisan hack like Joe Scarborough gets hours each day to sell the party line disguised as objectivity, I should not be surprised.

The true culprit is buried in the recesses of the fake news networks and partisan hacks disguised as newspersons. Somewhere the truth got packaged. Somewhere fact became opinion and opinion became fact. A simple example is the coverage of the RNC, where the chief talking point parroted by every GOP stooge was that Sarah Palin had more experience than Barack Obama. Only in a Rovian America can Barack Obama be considered inexperienced or somehow unaccomplished. That was the talking point we were sold. Only in the heart of Karl Roves America can a man who has accomplished so much be denigrated so easily. Barack Obama is a graduate from Harvard Law School. Instead of seeking a huge payday on Wall Street or in law practice, he spent three years as a brilliant community organizer, while becoming the first-ever black President of the Harvard Law Review. He also created a voter registration drive that registered 150,000 new voters. After community organizing, which was mocked by the entire GOP, Barack spent 12 years as a Constitutional Law Professor and eight years as a State Senator representing a district with over 750,000 people, where he became Chairman of the State Senate’s Health and Human Services Committee. He then successfully campaigned for the United States Senate and has spent four years in the Senate representing a state of 13 million people while sponsoring 131 bills (while Palin said he authored none) and serving on the Foreign Affairs, Environment and Public Works and Veteran’s Affairs committees. Yeah, he hasn’t done a thing folks.

And we are supposed to buy that he has less experience than Palin? Sarah Palin attended five different small colleges before graduating, with a journalism degree. From there she became the local weather girl, spent four years on the city council and six years as the mayor of a town with less than 7,000 people. Remember that as State Senator, Obama represented 750,000 people, not 7,000. After that Palin has spent 20 months as the governor of a state with only 650,000 people, or 100,000 LESS than what Obama represented on the state level. In that short 20 months, she has found herself under an ethics investigation for abuse of power.

There can be no debate folks. There is no way anyone can make an argument that Sarah Palin has anywhere near the experience of Barack Obama. Yet there was the corporate media, lapping it up and regurgitating it for the publics consumption. Barely a whimper in protest, barely a follow up question. THAT is how we get to the incredible level of stupidity in this country today. Up is down, right is wrong. Just repeat the stupidity over and over again and eventually some of it will stick. That is how they sold us the Iraq War. It is how they are selling us this ridiculous bailout plan. It is how McBush is trying to avoid the debate tonight. Subterfuge as credible fact. The secret to political success in latter day America is plausible deniability wrapped up in cool can of Budweiser.

Anthony Wade, a contributing writer to OpEd News, is dedicated to educating the populace to the lies and abuses of the government. He is a 40-year-old independent writer from New York with political commentary articles seen on multiple websites. A Christian progressive and professional Rehabilitation Counselor working with the poor and disabled, Mr. Wade believes that you can have faith and hold elected officials accountable for lies and excess.


Posted by Elvis on 09/28/08 •
Section American Solidarity • Section Dying America
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