When people say that we need a "balanced approach" to reducing our debt and being fiscally responsible, what I hear is: We need to balance what is true with what is false. We need to balance what is good for the whole country with what is good for a few super wealthy and powerful people. We need to balance the facts about how the economy works with self-serving fantasies of the the Koch brothers distributed by Fox News.
When I hear demands for a "small government" right now, I hear more Koch brothers, Goldman Sachs and Exxon controlling how we live, the air we breathe. I hear less We the People. I hear less oversight and accountability of powerful, multinational corporations. There is nothing wrong with small government as a matter of principle. In fact, I am all for limited government. Who wants unlimited government? Unlimited government is totalitarianism.
I do object to how "small government" is used to manipulate the public into justifying policies that hurt the majority of people in this country in favor of further enriching and empowering a few already very wealthy and powerful people. The truth is we have powerful individuals waiting to fill the vacuum left by government with greed and self-interest and calling it liberty.
Indeed, we have an entitlement problem in America. There are a few people who feel so entitled to power and wealth that they're willing to undermine our economy and democracy to keep them.
If I could have my way (and I would venture to guess, the majority of Americans' way as well), the national focus would be on creating jobs, not reducing the debt. Spending cuts would be focused largely on defense, and cutting social security, medicare and medicaid would be off the table.
Going forward, what I think we need is to invest in education and our crumbling infrastructure. We need jobs-training and job-creating programs with the public and private sectors working in partnership. We need to bail out people whose homes are underwater. We need debt forgiveness of student loans and medical debt. We need the government to use its power to bargain with the healthcare industry to bring down the cost of healthcare so that there is real access. We need accountability on Wall Street of those whose reckless and greedy actions led to the financial crisis. And most importantly, we need publicly-funded elections and a complete rejection of Citizens United.
Below, presentation made by Annabel Park in Madison, WI August, 2011, just days before the end of the Koch Brothers/Tea Party era of American politics (Jan. 20, 2009 to Sept. 17, 2011).
It's Official: Austerity Economics Doesn't Work by JOHN CASSIDY, The New Yorker
Several decades ago, Margaret Thatcher claimed: “There is no alternative”. She was referring to capitalism. Today, this negative attitude still persists.
I would like to offer an alternative to capitalism for the American people to consider. Please click on the following link. It will take you to an essay titled: “Home of the Brave?” which was published by the Athenaeum Library of Philosophy:
“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result."~ Albert Einstein
USA IS CHANGING FOR THE WORST AND MOST PEOPLE HAVE NO IDEA OF THE REAL CULPRITS AND THEIR DESTRUCTIVE AGENDAS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you Anabel Parks for your efforts to help WAKE EVERYBODY UP !!!
THIS IS CRUCIAL EDUCATION !!!!
I signed it, and I’d like to suggest that everyone do the same. It’s at https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/submit-substantial-jobs-bill-congress/LQkpZx5P (You’ll need to take a few minutes to create an account. It’s painless and worth doing, IMHO.)
I’m no economist. That’s why I trust people who are economists and experts. People far more knowledgeable and intelligent than I am. People like Robert Reich and Paul Krugman. There’s no shortage of their writings and presentations on the subject. Here are 2:
I know they know more than I can ever hope to know about the economy. I know they consistently express far more concern about the middle class and the working poor than the GOP, Fox News, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and all the other so-called “experts” and sources who are taking the side of the rich and of corporations.
When Reich and Krugman say we can’t address our federal debt and, hence, our economy, without raising taxes on the rich then I’m inclined to believe them.
Trickle down economics is a lie. Always has been. That’s the history lesson that needs to be learned. If it works so well – or even a little – then someone will need to explain to me what went so horribly wrong during the Bush administration (http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/15/business/low-jobs-numbers-for-obama-but-lower-for-his-predecessor.html).
Someone will need to educate me on why, after a decade of the Bush Tax cuts and while the wealth gap is at historic highs and tax rates are already at historic lows, corporations and the wealthy haven’t created more jobs.
The truth of life here is that tax increases will not solve our federal budget crisis. We have a spending problem that has been out of control for decades upon decades. Much of the spending is taken up by mandatory social programs that within a decade, will consume all incoming revenues, leaving discretionary, including defense to be paid for by borrowing even more.
The military budget used to take up 50% of Federal revenues back in the 50’s. It’s now down to 19%, while Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid now take over 50% and climbing fast. Medicare has been running a deficit for the last decade, and SS started partially running a deficit in 2010, due mostly to baby boomers now starting to retire in droves. SS and Medicare will only get worse for the next 2 decades, as we get even closer to 2 workers for every retiree. We are turning into Japan, which is going on their 3rd lost decade. I’m not making these numbers up, as they come from the actuaries of Medicare and SS.
We tried spending our way out of a depression before, and it didn’t work. There have been several times where we cut back on spending, taxes and regulations, with the results of economic booms of nearly a decade. Just comparing the 1920-21 depression and response, to the ’29-39 response and history is clear, more government is not the answer.
We should instead adopt Switzerland’s model of limiting government spending.