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.

Occupy Wall Street

I am so happy to see people beginning to stand up and reclaim their government!  I was online for several hours on Sunday with the people chatting on the Occupy Los Angeles livestreaming chat and sharing ideas regarding the protests and demands that are being formulated.  My own thinking on this is in view of the urgency with regard to the exercising of our civil rights, that repealing the Patriot Act should be at the top of the list along with preserving our ability to communicate with one another via the Internet.  There is currently a “resolution of disapproval” that has been ramrodded through the House of Representatives by big Telecom that undermines the Net Neutrality regulations that currently exist as well as banning the FCC from enacting future protections.  Texas Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison  is pushing for a vote in the Senate and we must stop this and any other such legislation from passing the Senate as it is a serious assault on our civil liberties and the level playing field to which we are all accustomed on the Internet.  So, because our right to assemble peaceably and to communicate freely are vital to the pursuit of any other goals, my two top recommendations for OWS demands are to repeal the Patriot Act and to save the Internet.

There are many other demands that we need to make in order to reclaim our democracy, and I think the one I would place third would be the reason behind occupying Wall Street, to end corporate greed by holding Wall Street and the Banks accountable by prosecuting them for wrongdoing and demanding they pay their fair share of taxes.

Another demand I think is essential is the revocation of corporate personhood, as this is a cancer that has metastasized throughout our system until the corporation runs our government while it pays few of the taxes, pays no royalties on mining and oil on public lands, pollutes our environment, and receives huge amounts of government money in subsidies and contracts.

Ending war would save lives as well as money and help us invest in rebuilding our country and democracy both at home and around the world.

These are the demands with which I would start that double as good slogans for the movement to reclaim our democracy:

  1. REPEAL THE SO-CALLED PATRIOT ACT! RESTORE THE BILL OF RIGHTS!
  2. A FREE AND OPEN INTERNET! SAVE NET NEUTRALITY!
  3. MAKE THE BANKS & WALL STREET PAY THEIR FAIR SHARE!
  4. PROSECUTE WALL STREET! PROSECUTE THE BANKS!
  5. END CORPORATE WELFARE! STOP SUBSIDIZING GREED!
  6. CLEAN UP THE ENVIRONMENT! MAKE POLLUTERS PAY!
  7. TAX THE RICHEST 1%! SUPPORT THE BUFFETT RULE!
  8. END ALL THE WARS! BRING THE TROOPS AND MONEY HOME!
  9. REVOKE CORPORATE PERSONHOOD! PEOPLE HAVE THE RIGHTS!

WE are the change we can believe in!!