Saturday, October 27, 2012

Bailing Out Main Street
Today is Friday, 26 October 2012.
On this date in 1977, the last known naturally-occurring case of smallpox was discovered in Somalia.  The CDC and WHO recognize today as the anniversary of the disease’s eradication.  It is the result of the most effective vaccination program in history.  Unfortunately, one must assume that a significant number of nations, including the United States Empire, retain smallpox as part of their biological weapons stockpiles.

Andrei Bely (pen name of Boris Nikolaevich Bugaev), author of the great novel Petersburg, was born on this date in 1880.

The Museum of the Bourgeois extends best wishes to Hillary Rodham Clinton, born on this date in 1947.  May insecure sexist males everywhere dither and cower.

Natalie Merchant (10,000 Maniacs) was born on this date in 1963.
Among the more pernicious lies of our times is that Barack Obama and the Democratic Party, through the financial stimuli meant to avert the Second Great Depression almost caused by the irresponsible and greedy policies of the Repub Partei, are guilty of bailing out Wall Street at the expense of Main Street.
I think not.  Wall Street and Main Street are intimately and inextricably bound up in the continuum of the actual beneficiary of the bailout:  United States Empire capitalism.  Had the great USE financial institutions been allowed to collapse into bankruptcy, sinking financial markets world-wide, the result would have been catastrophic to almost all Americans.   (The much-vaunted “creative destruction” (schoepferische Zerstoerung) is usually simply destruction and devastation, pure and simple.)
The bedrock principle of American capitalism is not wealth trickling down, but wealth being sucked up.  Thus, it should come as no surprise that the only way to save the system was to staunch the bleeding at the top.
Your author believes that, in fact, Obama didn’t propose a large enough stimulus package, a position also held by Nobelist Paul Krugman, among many others.  Of course, the Repubs in Congress (ideologues, hypocrites, the ignorant, and the nervous willies) blather on about The National Debt (“Oh!  the horror!”), and probably would have blocked any larger stimulus.  The truth is that all successful nation-states must incur appropriate state debt properly to function.  Certainly, it can get out of control, as in, for example, the state defaults/bankruptcies of Philip II of Spain (1557, 1560, 1575, 1596), but the USE is far from that situation.
Without strict regulation, capitalism eats its own.
On a related note:  read “Tax Policy Center in Spotlight for Its Romney Study” by Anne Lowrey, in 24 October The New York Times.  The study noted that Romney couldn’t fulfill all the promises in his tax ”plan”, and that, fundamentally, it would raise taxes for everyone but the rich, who would wallow in cuts.
Even a tax expert at the hard-right American Enterprise Institute, the staunch defender of unregulated predatory capitalism, agreed.  “I like tax reform.  I want to broaden the base. It’s something I’ve devoted my life to. And I would welcome Governor Romney and the Republicans’ strong push, but the plan doesn’t work out. It’s not mathematically possible.”  Thus spake a True Believer.


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