Going on Full Offensive

February 27th, 2011

Emboldened by advances made in many areas, and feeling the wind at their backs, Republicans at the state level are letting go with rapid fusillades against Democrats. Republicans across the country are attempting to decimate unions while empowering corporations. Controlling an unusually large number of state houses, they fully intend to gerrymander the crap out of their states, while instituting measures like voter-ID laws, purported to combat imaginary voter fraud while actually designed to keep Democrats away from the voting booth.

This is not just campaigning for a candidate or a party. It’s not just trying to spin news or events. It’s an attempt to abuse political power and the law itself to grab power, to disenfranchise and cut the legs out from under people who believe differently so power can be maintained by a minority.

Meanwhile, on Fox News, they are panting with fear at the massive crowds in places like Wisconsin; they would be cheering American spirit were they Tea Partiers, but now the sheer number of people who are pissed to no end scares the piss out of them.

Almost comically, they make the comparison to Egypt–as if it is a bad thing–and yet somehow miss the commonality that can be applied best to the comparison: that people can be abused so much that they eventually stand up and say, “no more.” Particularly they miss the part about who is being the hated dictatorial abusers.

  1. Tim Kane
    February 28th, 2011 at 03:15 | #1

    Well, in 1979, the top 2% controlled $9 trillion.

    As of 2010, they controlled $40 trillion. They want to grow that at about a 7%, compounded, rate. That means by 2014 they’ll have $50 trillion.

    Where will that come from? Who will it come from? How will they get that?

    Here’s a hint: since 1972, wages have remained flat, while GNP has gone up over 150%.

    Back when they only controlled $11 trillion and unions still represented 15% of the workers they had to use A game marketing, finesse, culture wars and persuasion, to get people to vote for them. But with $40 to $50 trillion in their control they control all the media, all the Republican party, and most of those Democrats that get elected – or at least enough that, when combined with republicans they control, they have a majority.

    As they get more power, it’s harder to hide their pretensions. It’s like a sci-fi movie with shape shifter’s having to burn intense energy to appear to be handsome and friendly, eventually they can’t hide their shape any more, and the monster becomes apparent, but hopefully by that time they’ve gotten so much power it doesn’t matter.

    That’s the case I think here with the Republicans. They can still get respectable numbers with their culture wars meme – the old 25 to 33% – of idiots who don’t realize that values and morality are a middle class phenomena.

    But to everyone else, the scales should be falling from their eyes.

    But by now, it’s a wonder if it’s too late. The right wing rich have an almost wall-to-wall control of the media.

    We have a demand deficient recession, with 15% unemployed, 10% underemployed, another 15% on the bubble, those are big numbers, yet no talk of demand side bias policies because that’s a headwind to growing that $40 trillion to $50 trillion.

    Tight state budgets yet no talk of raising taxes on the rich, instead they pit the have-littles (public workers) against the have-nothings (everyone else).

    But for the most part, as the Republicans are more and more successful at eating away at the middle class, they more and more dispense with the pretext. In some cases it’s because they have to: a python that swallows a pig looks more like a pig than it does a python, they can’t disguise themselves, but their power is just so overwhelmingly great they just don’t care anymore.

    I’m sure they’ve done the calculations, and figure that the situation is largely irreversible.

    I know Troy likes to think that Obama will swing left after 2012. Whatever. It will probably be too late, but, it seems to me that just as likely, he’ll swing even further to the right. After all, he’s going to spend the rest of his life as an elite. As will his daughters. He’s got them to think about.

    Things are very dark and getting darker, but strangely, that at least clarifies things.

  2. Troy
    February 28th, 2011 at 05:47 | #2

    I think Obama will swing to where the votes are in 2012 — he needs to win Virginia and ten other battleground states like Colorado, Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois . . .

    I hope his experience growing up with an erratic single mom and benefits of the generous welfare state that was collapsing behind him have instilled in him a desire to fight for what’s the public good.

    Otherwise he’ll be something of a “class traitor” — yanking up the ladder behind him.

    I think he’s done OK so far with the general cards he’s been dealt.

    The people have a choice here. They can approve of the Republican wrecking crew or they can go with the Dems.

    The Republicans had the advantage of 2009-2010 operating in an environment with almost zero public opposition. There were no demonstrations for the health care reform bill, and still nobody even knows its benefits.

    So far the Republicans have been overplaying their hand, making it pretty easy to argue that the right has strangled the recovery in the crib with their dumb-ass ideas.

    I think it’s a fair vote — if the people reject the Dems in 2012, it’ll be their funeral.

    Be happy you got PR in Japan, Luis, though I’m pretty sure Japan is just as screwed as the US — Japan is 10 years further along the road to hell but maybe your underlying problems aren’t half as bad, given the Japanese trade surplus — Japan had a $2000/worker trade surplus in 2010, plus earned another $1000/worker on its nearly $900B holding of US debt — those are two nice problems to have. . .

    As I’ve said before, I’m beginning to think Japan’s retiring baby boomer problem isn’t going to be quite as bad as the US’s. . .

    For one, they already have sorted out their medical system to keep costs down for the most part.

    Secondly, Japan’s boom was only one sharp peak in the late 1940s, not the 15-year wave that peaked in the US in 1955.

    Right now Japan has 10M people in their “baby boom” aged 61-65:


    Compare that to the US:


    where the pre-boom numbers 12M aged 65-69, and the following “bumrush” of aging boomers extends all the way out to the 45-49 cohort, a total of 80 MILLION people!

    Japanese old people are also a lot less obese than Americans, and I think the Japanese boomers might be reasonably healthy, too. As far as their share of consumption goes, I do think think they require much, just rice, vegetables, and fish — ie. their diet is reasonably Earth-friendly (except for the fish part I guess).

    The US, is just utterly screwed going forward. The very size of the boomers makes it a very powerful interest group, and they may in fact start voting to drag the ladder up with them.

  3. Tim Kane
    February 28th, 2011 at 11:43 | #3

    Japanese diet is earth friendly, but maybe not ocean friendly.

    The U.S. butresses it’s baby boom with high immigration levels. It also has a vast surpluss in the social security trust. Trouble is, all that money went to the rich in the form of tax cuts – and the rich know this, and don’t want to pay it back, which is why they like to propagate the meme that Social Security is doomed.

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