Well Thanks Again, Mr. Obama, for Nothing!

We can always depend on Obama to hand over his best bargaining chip and cave in to the right-wing.  Is there any promise on which he has made good?  All talk and no action; all style and no substance.  Yet again he caves in to the detriment of we the people.  See  Fiscal cliff deal raises taxes on 77% of Americans

All this fiscal “deal” proves is that neither Democrats nor Republicans have any answers, and this president can always be relied upon to hand over his best leverage without any more than a squeak of protest.  Wake up everyone–both parties are looking out for the interests of the 1%, not the 99%,and have created this “fiscal cliff” drama to distract the public from the elephant in the room: the defense budget and the wars, the REAL reason for the deficit.  Why?  Because corporations make megabucks off war!

One wonders what happened to the crusading orator who promised when campaigning to rein in the excesses of Wall Street, and protect Main Street.  It turns out that apparently Obama is just another corporatist deceptively using populist lexicon as a smokescreen for his real intentions, and ultimately you have to pay attention to what the man DOES, not what he says.

Is Obama Dangling us Over the Cliff?!

Obama &  the Social Safety Net

I am very concerned that the White House is going to cave in to pressure from the hostage-taking Republicans with regard to the phony “fiscal cliff” despite the fact that it is a huge betrayal of the middle class and the poor to continue to allow the ultra-rich 1% to evade paying their fair share of taxes off the backs of the rest of us.  We also are not fooled by the phony “fiscal cliff” nonsense, nor are we taken in by the attempt to gut Social Security and Medicare, programs to which we the people are ENTITLED because people have paid into them their entire adult lives!  Social Security and Medicare do not add ONE PENNY to the deficit so this is a total red herring and the budget crisis is one of their own making.  But we the people, per usual, are the ones who stand to lose from the political posturing because these threats have real financial consequences in the real world to real people and Obama is not grounded in terra firma if he risks the well-being of the American people in this game of chicken.  Will he throw us over the cliff or throw us a lifeline and keep the social safety net intact?

Obama was re-elected to stand up to these right-wing lapdogs to the ultra-rich, not give in to their rigid, grossly unfair, preposterous demands, but if history is any indicator, he will forget who elected him, become the weak, spineless (or worse) non-leader he has been, and cave in once again.  Worse, Obama has been the one who has opened the door to cutting Social Security and Medicare, decrying his not “getting credit” to negotiate away our most basic programs upon which millions of Americans depend.  As these cuts would especially harm women who are the poorest of the poor, I here reiterate what the National Organization of Women stated, that specifically he should NOT:

  • back down from allowing the full amount of the Bush-era tax cuts for the top 2% of income earners to expire
  •  agree to the “chained CPI,” a cruel and immediate cut in Social Security benefits
  • agree to raising the Medicare eligibility age
  • agree to means-testing Medicare
  • agree to cutting Medicaid funding in any way

All of this current discussion in Washington is a distraction.  If cuts were applied where they need to be–wars and the Pentagon–and the richest 1% and multinational corporations were paying their fair share in taxes and generating the jobs they supposedly create, there would be no deficit and no budget shortfall.  John Boehner, Paul Ryan, and the rest of the austerity fascists and their enablers like Obama need to fall off their fictional fiscal cliff, not mercilessly shove the middle class and the poor over it by destroying the social safety net while allowing their billionaire paymasters to continue to evade responsibility for their actions and live as fiscal predators and parasites off the backs of the 99%.  We would be far better off to have tax increases across the board go into effect than trade away these vital lifelines.  In a world where the interests of the people were actually considered, Congress could then draw up a sensible budget strengthening Social Security and streamlining Medicare, and eliminate the deficit by increasing taxes on the ultra-rich, ending all the wars, and drastically reducing the bloated Pentagon budget.

Global Warming: the Real, “Physical” Cliff

the-cliffs-at-mountain-park_w725_h500

While representatives in Washington debate the  “fiscal cliff” of their own invention, we are edging ever closer to a real, physical cliff:  extreme weather due to carbon emissions.  After almost entirely avoiding the issue of climate change and the need for pursuing alternatives to fossil fuels during the presidential debates, Hurricane Sandy hit with a vengeance to drive the point home how critical the situation is and I credit it with playing a role in defeating Republicans this November, particularly Romney.

Despite Sandy and the increasing urgency for action, the naysayers and dimwitted demagogues in Washington pretend that their made-up budget deadline is more important than attending the Climate Summit in Doha, Qatar.  Sen. Inhofe, true to form,  is reportedly questioning why anyone should attend the conference as the White House and Congress are embroiled in budget so-called “negotiations” (going nowhere as usual) and are conspicuously absent. Though the developing nations of India and China now are producing huge amounts of CO2, the U. S. remains the most flagrantly unrelenting in its refusal to ratify carbon reduction agreements, even though it has had the worst historical record of carbon emissions, and its inattendance severely thwarts worldwide efforts to change course.

I wonder if the moronic Inhofe is still declaring climate change a “hoax” in the wake of Sandy.  His state of Oklahoma has been experiencing record drought, like the rest of the Great Plains states: North and South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Montana, Wyoming, New Mexico, and Colorado, but this hasn’t previously phased him.  It is curious to note that all these same states, with the exception of New Mexico and Colorado, voted for Romney, a climate denier, in the last election.  Perhaps the residents of these states, along with the disinformation-pushing Koch Bros., need to take a tour of the eastern seaboard, and witness the destruction firsthand so that they might be shaken awake, as every coastal state, from Maine to Florida, was affected, along with other northeastern states like Michigan and Wisconsin, as the storm traveled clear across the Appalachians.

Corporate agriculture, enabled by global-warming scoffing Republicans like Inhofe, will increasingly be attempting to profiteer off tragic disasters like megastorm Sandy, as Naomi Klein outlines in her book, “Shock Doctrine:  The Rise of Disaster Capitalism.”  You can bet that they will be pushing more and more GMO crops, hormones, and pesticides in order to try to circumvent nature rather than correcting the problem of burning fossil fuels.  This is equivalent to what the pharmaceutical industry does in pushing drugs that fool your body into thinking its ok rather than going after the cause of the illness and curing it.

We cannot look to our plutocratic government to lead nor can we hope for any solutions from the greed-driven corporate world.  As always, we the people are the ones who will effect real change by direct action and demanding that our government do what is needed, e. g.  institute serious emissions reduction, pursue clean alternatives to dirty energy,  and preserve tropical rainforests.  We must also end corporate “personhood” and money as speech, and stop the Trans-Pacific Partnership as they figure into this largely:  corporate “personhood” is the root problem behind all the others and the TPP would institute global corporate government and permanently hamper efforts to slow global warming or protect the environment.

Bill McKibben, who heads up 350.org, has been doing a “Do the Math” tour to help raise awareness regarding heating of the planet because of CO2 emissions and resulting climate change.  He has been encouraging students to pressure their college boards to divest themselves of big polluters, which has expanded into an effort at schools across the country.  This is how we get things done!  For more information on these issues, check out these links:

http://www.politico.com/story/2012/12/fiscal-cliff-worries-overshadow-qatar-climate-talks-84588.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jerry-cope/president-obama-to-attend_b_2114201.html?utm_hp_ref=climate-change

http://news.yahoo.com/climate-change-threatens-long-term-sustainability-great-plains-130100922.html

To Fight Climate Change, College Students Take Aim at the Endowment Portfolio – NYTimes.com

http://www.350.org/nyt?akid=2535.725965.OzWAg4&rd=1&t=4

http://gofossilfree.org/companies/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DtqSIplGXOA&feature=youtu.be