A Lot of Ruin In a Nation

It takes a lot to destroy a country - but our elites don't even believe it's possible.

Recently your humble correspondent had the opportunity to sit in on an economic status meeting of a junior branch of the Elites.

No, this wasn't my long-anticipated invitation to the Bilderbergs, the Council on Foreign Relations, or even the Masons.  They were a mixture of successful people, mostly senior executives from private industry serving the government sector, with a smattering of senior executives from the government financial world, who may or may not have previously met.

Nobody would mistake them for the actual people who run the world; but most of them have contacts with those that do.  Their views on our current and near-future economic climate should be of interest to us little people down here on the ground, to say the least.

The more so since the moderator decided to open the meeting with a "get-acquainted" trick straight out of the Big Book 'o Public Meetings: go around the table, introduce yourself and your organization...

...And rate, on a scale from 1 to 10, your view of the American economy through the end of 2012, with 10 being "bullish" and 1 being "bearish."

Round the table we went, CEO of this, Senior Economist of that, Corporate Attorney So-and-so.  The economic outlook?  7, 6, 8, 10, with one shamefaced 4 trying not to be noticed.

Finally they got to me.  The national economic outlook through 2012?  "A one (1)."  Audible gasps from across the room.

Our conference room had blonder wood.

The Past is the Key to the Future?

The advertised purpose of the meeting was to listen to a presentation on current economic trends by a noted academic analyst.  This professional economist started her presentation by expressing surprise at everyone's optimism, then went into a detailed and well-supported discourse on everything that's gone wrong.  Regular readers of Scragged would be familiar with much of her data, but not all of it, and not to her level of detail.

She even put forward a well-known series of graphs from the Wall Street Journal demonstrating how America's fiscal position is just as bad as that of Greece if not worse; just how much our national debt and deficits have skyrocketed during the Obama administration; and how unlikely it is that the money can simply be taxed out of our hides.

Then, to conclude, she was asked what she thought the economy would be like.  Her answer?  A seven, "maybe 6.5".

Six at worst.  Did she not listen to her own speech?

Well, there are two explanations of caveat.  She said that she hadn't included the possibility of a severe external shock, like war with Iran or another terrorist attack; fair enough.

She was also foreign; she flatly stated that she did not understand the American political structure or system, and only barely was beginning to appreciate the dynamic between our two major parties.  Perhaps she considers them merely two sides of the same coin, as does the occasional Scragged reader?

At bottom, quoth she, the dynamism of the American entrepreneurial class and small business has always come out on top.  It's done so any number of times; it will again.  Just a matter of time - and the unspoken faith warmed the patriotic cockles of my heart - no matter what happens in the short term.

Faith, Founded or Unfounded?

Adam Smith, the patron saint of conservative capitalism, once pointed out that "there is a great deal of ruin in a nation."  He was making the point that nations, and economies, can survive disasters and trials that you'd think would destroy them.  America has been through tough times and has always come out on top before; why shouldn't we expect America to prevail yet again?

Well, we do, actually, at least in a sense.  We do not in fact believe that Obama's wealth-destroying policies and oppressive regulatory regime will actually succeed in destroying all Americans.  We don't even believe that our ruinously bad public schools and insane immigration policy will fully destroy American culture across the board, though there are increasingly large sections of this country that are American in no way other than the geographic.

We're optimistic in a way, but not because we aren't in deep, deep trouble.  It's because we believe that large numbers of Americans will take action to put an end to those who are destroying the American dream, American power, American prestige, and American exceptionalism.  The 2010 landslide was a bellwether; the Tea Party is a sign: our problems are dire, worse than ever before, and new solutions are urgently required, but Americans are waking up to realize this.  They are demanding action, but the longer their rulers refuse to respond, the more likely it becomes that the American people will take the actions they believe are necessary regardless of what their supposed masters say.

Our elites, whose views my fellow-conferees represent, simply do not understand this.  They consider us to be in a minor hiccup that their august wisdom will inevitably resolve.  They totally fail to comprehend that it is precisely because of their faith in their wisdom and the optimism of supreme self-confidence represented by their continued bullishness on the American economy despite every last bit of evidence staring them in the face, that we're in the trouble we're in.

So they won't let go.  They won't stop their machinations, their ever-more-intrusive regulations, their ever-more-oppressive rules, their ever-more-egregious taxes that have caused America's wealthy investors to go on strike.

Unless, of course, we make them stop.  Do we have faith in the ability of the American people to, once again, throw off shackles?  What will be the cost of the attempt?

Petrarch is a contributing editor for Scragged.  Read other Scragged.com articles by Petrarch or other articles on Economics.
Reader Comments

"They consider us to be in a minor hiccup that their august wisdom will inevitably resolve. They totally fail to comprehend that it is precisely because of their faith in their wisdom and the optimism of supreme self-confidence represented by their continued bullishness on the American economy despite every last bit of evidence staring them in the face, that we're in the trouble we're in."

Beautifully stated and right on the money!

July 28, 2011 9:41 AM

Can there not be a revolution among the elites?

If you (Petrarch) sit at that kind of table, one might suggest that YOU are an elite. I don't mean by attitude (elitism) but in position and status.

It stands to reason that there are "elites" that are not elitist and really do care about the situation at hand, and share our beliefs.

Why can't those elites rise up and trample on the others? Are there simply not enough of them? I cannot believe that there are no wealth or important people that believe in the founding principles of America. Surely, there must be some.

July 28, 2011 9:59 AM

Surely there must be some, yes. But, so far as I can tell, they are overwhelmingly in the minority. Most elites are true experts and/or geniuses only in one very small and highly restricted area of expertise; they don't see the big picture. Based on their own personal expertise, they seem to just assume that whoever's in charge of all those other areas that they don't themselves understand, know what they're doing. Basically, a generalized faith in the power of human expertise.

Which is exactly their mistake: there is a whole category of things that CANNOT be run by fiat from on high, the economy among them. It's this basic concept that conflicts with the self-image of the elites I've had dealings with.

Very few of them would claim to personally be experts in everything. Next to none of them would agree, or even really understand the philosophy, that NOBODY can be a sufficiently good expert to run the show and that we're better off just leaving things to individual peons to make their own decisions.

July 28, 2011 10:51 AM

I have a problem with the widespread use of the term "elite" when referring to those who consider themselves our masters rather than our public servants. I also object to the constant references to the so-called "experts" who are frequently expert at nothing more than self-promotion in furtherance of their own financial position or the pursuit of power to influence others to their political philosophy.

IMHO we might be more accurate in describing the former as "would-be elites",or those who "hold elitist attitudes", and the latter above-mentioned group as those who have experience in a particular field, or whose opinions are well-regarded.

Just a matter of semantics, or am I not alone in my skepticism?

July 28, 2011 11:29 AM

The most interesting thing with many of these economic forums is that they are generally held in the compartmentalized closet of this single perspective. That is, there is no generalist or polymathmatical perspective to balance the arc of the views.
Sense 'economics' is influenced by many factors in the real world, such a compartmentalized assessment, in this case - one obviously going full circle from "hi duh" to "bye duh", that is concluding in a fairyland faithmobile headed towards a cliff.

This is why our trusted humble correspondent can conclude with, "Our elites, whose views my fellow-conferees represent, simply do not understand this." What is missed is the 'wall' existing between the thinking of the aparatchik class and the actual power elite. A different universe not imagined by compartmentalized thinking. The missing factor is the understanding of 'INTENT'of the Pinnacle Elite, and how it is miscomprehended by majority understanding.

My thus and therefore, so far unstated, will be anticipated by some readers who have read me here.

That there is this discontinuity at a certain hight in the hierarchy may seem a fantastic assertion to some, or many. I find that a curious attitude. Just the term 'gated community' should give the intuitive an idea of what I am talking about. And I do not refer to the five or six million dollar properties in, say Orange County CA. Let you imagination take the idea of gated communities a thousand fold more extreme...

Yes - a cliff hanger...

July 28, 2011 11:30 AM

"Just a matter of semantics, or am I not alone in my skepticism?"Ed

All lexicon is a matter of convenience in communication with the popular terms of the times. "Elite" has many catagories. If you think of it in terms of 'power elite', you might see that it is not simply semantics, but refer to those with high political powers, regardless of what one might think of their intelligence.

A better understanding of the architecture of modern political power would be advised for most here.

July 28, 2011 11:40 AM

"Next to none of them would agree, or even really understand the philosophy, that NOBODY can be a sufficiently good expert to run the show and that we're better off just leaving things to individual peons to make their own decisions."~Petrarch

Again, this really doesn't matter if the INTENT of the power elite is miscomprehended. Who is better off when humankind is left to their own devices? The larger mass of the people. Who is better of when humankind is regulated, boxed and packaged and bought and sold as a commodity? Name them, choose your terms; 'power elite', 'masters of the universe', 'the high cabal'.

There are those who have a completely different point of view as to what is in their self interest. Until one sees the canyon from the highest peak, this may be hard to imagine.

July 28, 2011 11:53 AM

From 1945 until recently, the US was in a distinct economic period, which ended in 2008. That period began with the dominance of the US at the end of WWII. It progressed through the normal cycles that characterize a (somewhat) free market economy, in which peaks are followed by recessions. The Fed used its power to provide "soft landings" in these recessions, following the widely accepted Keynesian theories. This weakened the reparative benefits of the normal free-market system, in which recent excesses are abandoned. The result has been a growing national view that our system had "progressed" to a permanently modern level of perpetual economic well-being, which the government is able to assure.

The political class, being opportunists as they are, added to this condition by assisting the Fed in creating bubbles (usually in housing),as proof to citizens that their vote was appreciated, and needed to continue prosperity.

Elitism is only the natural out-cropping of the weakness inherent in human nature, which has grown out of our long-bubble economy.

All the Fed levers have been pulled, all the political strategies have been implemented, and we are now in economic stall.

How soon we return to American-style prosperity depends on how long it takes for a large number of Americans to accept that the easy-money party is over and that the government can't fix it. The natural path of economies and human nature point in the direction of reaching that understanding sooner or later. However, for now, we must work our way through experiments in Socialism, attempts by the economy doctors to revive a dead patient, and the denial by citizens that they must return to traditional values and methods.

It may take awhile before the pain cures us.

July 28, 2011 12:09 PM

P Jones,
Rather than address your point one at a time, let me make a general statement that appies to all who hold the mainstream point of view that you have expressed.

There is a missing integer in the thinking of all who do not grasp that the US is in, has been in a state of national emergency since 1933, has been is an even more specific state of national emergency since 2001.
To clarify the term, "state of emergency", it means "martial law."

We are NOT simply dealing with an economic crisis here - we are facing off a planned and implimented draconian despotism.

If the readers wish, I will explain the COG and what bearing it has on the discussion here today.

July 28, 2011 12:40 PM

Ed Blessing:

Ed, you are not alone in the use of the word elite. It is at best a misnomer, at worst a self appointed czar of a particular area. If they had been right on their policy decisions they would not have to self congratulate themselves, we the public would applaud them. The "elite media" is one that particularly galls me.

July 28, 2011 1:22 PM

The following is a shortened version of John Galt's speech. In it he identifies what is wrong and how to correct it. The speech is, in my estimation, very applicable to the article.

For twelve years you've been asking "Who is John Galt?" This is John Galt speaking. I'm the man who's taken away your victims and thus destroyed your world. You've heard it said that this is an age of moral crisis and that Man's sins are destroying the world. But your chief virtue has been sacrifice, and you've demanded more sacrifices at every disaster. You've sacrificed justice to mercy and happiness to duty. So why should you be afraid of the world around you?

Your world is only the product of your sacrifices. While you were dragging the men who made your happiness possible to your sacrificial altars, I beat you to it. I reached them first and told them about the game you were playing and where it would take them. I explained the consequences of your 'brother-love' morality, which they had been too innocently generous to understand. You won't find them now, when you need them more than ever.

We're on strike against your creed of unearned rewards and unrewarded duties. If you want to know how I made them quit, I told them exactly what I'm telling you tonight. I taught them the morality of Reason -- that it was right to pursue one's own happiness as one's principal goal in life. I don't consider the pleasure of others my goal in life, nor do I consider my pleasure the goal of anyone else's life.

I am a trader. I earn what I get in trade for what I produce. I ask for nothing more or nothing less than what I earn. That is justice. I don't force anyone to trade with me; I only trade for mutual benefit. Force is the great evil that has no place in a rational world. One may never force another human to act against his/her judgment. If you deny a man's right to Reason, you must also deny your right to your own judgment. Yet you have allowed your world to be run by means of force, by men who claim that fear and joy are equal incentives, but that fear and force are more practical.

You've allowed such men to occupy positions of power in your world by preaching that all men are evil from the moment they're born. When men believe this, they see nothing wrong in acting in any way they please. The name of this absurdity is 'original sin'. That's inmpossible. That which is outside the possibility of choice is also outside the province of morality. To call sin that which is outside man's choice is a mockery of justice. To say that men are born with a free will but with a tendency toward evil is ridiculous. If the tendency is one of choice, it doesn't come at birth. If it is not a tendency of choice, then man's will is not free.

And then there's your 'brother-love' morality. Why is it moral to serve others, but not yourself? If enjoyment is a value, why is it moral when experienced by others, but not by you? Why is it immoral to produce something of value and keep it for yourself, when it is moral for others who haven't earned it to accept it? If it's virtuous to give, isn't it then selfish to take?

part 2 of speech in next post

July 28, 2011 1:28 PM

Your acceptance of the code of selflessness has made you fear the man who has a dollar less than you because it makes you feel that that dollar is rightfully his. You hate the man with a dollar more than you because the dollar he's keeping is rightfully yours. Your code has made it impossible to know when to give and when to grab.

You know that you can't give away everything and starve yourself. You've forced yourselves to live with undeserved, irrational guilt. Is it ever proper to help another man? No, if he demands it as his right or as a duty that you owe him. Yes, if it's your own free choice based on your judgment of the value of that person and his struggle. This country wasn't built by men who sought handouts. In its brilliant youth, this country showed the rest of the world what greatness was possible to Man and what happiness is possible on Earth.

Then it began apologizing for its greatness and began giving away its wealth, feeling guilty for having produced more than ikts neighbors. Twelve years ago, I saw what was wrong with the world and where the battle for Life had to be fought. I saw that the enemy was an inverted morality and that my acceptance of that morality was its only power. I was the first of the men who refused to give up the pursuit of his own happiness in order to serve others.

To those of you who retain some remnant of dignity and the will to live your lives for yourselves, you have the chance to make the same choice. Examine your values and understand that you must choose one side or the other. Any compromise between good and evil only hurts the good and helps the evil.

If you've understood what I've said, stop supporting your destroyers. Don't accept their philosophy. Your destroyers hold you by means of your endurance, your generosity, your innocence, and your love. Don't exhaust yourself to help build the kind of world that you see around you now. In the name of the best within you, don't sacrifice the world to those who will take away your happiness for it.

The world will change when you are ready to pronounce this oath:
I swear by my Life and my love of it that I will never live for the sake of another man,
nor ask another man to live for the sake of mine.

July 28, 2011 1:29 PM

The fact is America operates under elite-serving constructs and institutions. Personalities (Obama, Palin, etc.) and issues (deficit, health care, etc.) play within elite-serving constructs and within elite-serving institutions. Americans and America lose playing this game. On this planet only substantive ideas can and will work over time. Only substantive ideas can serve Americans and America. Only with substantive ideas will politicians and institutions be accountable.

Political organization is a creation of nature. Nature’s political organization (governance) is not about abstractions devoid of a concrete base and fact-deficient assertions any more than gravity is about abstractions devoid of a concrete base and fact-deficient assertions. Nature’s political organization (governance) is engineering principles, and things function according to these engineering principles.

Ideas in harmony with the engineering principles will flourish in a paradigm based on the engineering principles. If the ideas of a political website are substantive, then it’s understand governance, get on governance, and stay on governance. If the ideas of a political website are not substantive, then it’s boycott the engineering principles (governance).

I (www.frankcorey.com) explain governance in the concrete through fact situations that confront Americans and Americans can readily understand. The vehicle I use is real estate zoning in a suburb outside of Chicago. Once one knows the true story, one has an understanding of governance. And then one can apply governance in being about his/her personal interests and his/her country’s interests. Governance Forever More!

It’s the website’s prerogative to air this blog or kill it. Thank you and have a good day.

July 28, 2011 1:37 PM

Burlesque L'Titantic
What Obama, Boehner and Geithner are actually doing: They aren't even rearranging the deck chairs; they're tap dancing on top of the deck chairs in a classic Vaudeville performance to try to put on a good show while the ship goes down.

Whether they come to any agreement on raising the debt ceiling is irrelevant. That the U.S. has reached the point where it has to mail out 80 million checks a month just to keep the population economically alive -- and where it now has to print a few trillion dollars every quarter just to buy its own debt -- should prove to any intelligent observer that the total financial implosion of America is inevitable.

So, what are they really plotting while putting on this burlesque?
That is where COG and martial law come into the picture, for if it is inecitable that the financial emplosion is on the way - and it in fact is - then there must be a way to deal with that aftermath.

And a note to bassboat, John Galt is a fictional character, and the figment of the imagination of a psychotic lunatic.

July 28, 2011 1:42 PM

"Political organization is a creation of nature."~Frank Corey

Wrong - political organization is an artifact, a technique of man.
Man is a creation of nature, this is so. But mankind has ideas of his own not in sympathy with nature, nor even in comprehension of nature.
This is not a clockwork orange.

July 28, 2011 1:50 PM

AND SO...What goes on behind closed doors while the Obama Boener Burlesque is marquee'd?

At the same time as the stage show, Senate party leaders have another solution in mind, weakening constitutional power with it. Proposed by Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R. KY) and Majority Leader Harry Reid (D. NV), it would establish a Super Congress, an idea a despot would love as one step from a Super President, aka a dictator.

The McConnell/Reid idea would empower 12 lawmakers, six from each party, to fast-track legislation through both Houses without amendments. In other words, Big Money-written bills would be voted on up or down, no changes. It will facilitate ending social contract protections and enact more police state enforcement laws, crushing opposition to transfer all public and private wealth to capital interests running America, making it more than ever unfit to live it.

The deal is done, perhaps with Super Congress authority, an idea House Speaker John Boehner (R. OH) endorses in two steps. In fact, multiple steps will entirely destroy America's social contract, leaving working households on their own sink or swim.

July 28, 2011 2:44 PM

The ongoing battle between the House, Senate, and President over the upcoming debt crisis has led establishment Congressmen in the Senate to propose the creation of a Super Congress to create and pass legislation allowing for the raising of the debt ceiling. Led by Republican Senator Mitch McConnell, and proposed on July 24th during the weekend


Huffington Post and Washington Post also have stories on this as well.
In fact if you put the term in your browser you will find a few pages of sites to investigate it on your own. Depending on the characterization, or spin, you may get some idea of what is in store in the near future for the USA.

July 28, 2011 3:08 PM

Supported by a Supreme Court that has unequivocally demonstrated a willingness to ignore or sign off on egregious tramplings of the Constitution, the stage is set for the U.S. government to evolve into something far more dangerous on the domestic front.

The Insurrection Act remains as written two centuries ago, even after some legal waffling in recent years, and it’s a show-stopper. Plainly put, it authorizes the President to deploy federal troops within the United States to put down lawlessness, insurrection or rebellion. Should he do so, the Executive Orders are in place and the military leadership is in place under the name The United States Northern Command. Not incidentally, “Northern” means the northern hemisphere, and for the reason the so-called tinfoil hats say it is. NorthCom is authorized to deploy foreign troops on US soil. The mobilization plan is called the Northern National Security Emergency Preparedness Directorate. It’s the White House’s “nuclear option.” Under this plan, units from the armed forces would be deployed and directed by NorthCom, placing our beloved land under the sort of military regimes seen in occupied Europe during the 1939-1945 war.
~James Carville

July 28, 2011 3:28 PM

BassBoat, I loved your John Galt Discourse. It was right on the money and made tons of sense. Thank you for putting it forth.

July 28, 2011 5:17 PM

It is annoying that people who have no idea what they are talking about are so ready to pop off. But it is discouraging to a writer that people are so emotional that they cannot follow an argument.

July 28, 2011 5:53 PM

“Give me control of a nation’s money and I care not who makes the laws.”~Amschel Rothschild

“I am a most unhappy man. I have unwittingly ruined my country. A great industrial nation is controlled by its system of credit. Our system of credit is concentrated. The growth of the nation, therefore, and all our activities are in the hands of a few men. No longer a government by free opinion, no longer a government by conviction and vote of majority, but a government by the opinion and duress of a small group of dominant men.”~President Woodrow Wilson (regretting signing into law the Federal Reserve Act)

“It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before morning.”~Henry Ford

“By this means (fractional reserve banking) government may secretly and unobserved, confiscate the wealth of the people, and not one man in a million will detect the theft.”~John Maynard Keynes, The Economic Consequences of the Peace (1920)

“The modern banking process manufactures currency out of nothing. The process is perhaps the most astounding piece of slight hand that was ever invented…If you want to be slaves of the bankers, and pay the cost of your own slavery, then let the banks create currency”.~Lord Josiah Stemp, Former Director of the Bank of England (1937)

July 28, 2011 6:26 PM

Is that deep rumble a hurricane? An earthquake?

No it is Crazyhorseand Geronimo laughing from their graves.

They welcome the white man to life on the reservation.

July 28, 2011 7:36 PM

Marilii ,

Thanks. The John Galt speech, while fiction, will be the solution when the producers finally quit producing. Government produces nothing and the country will implode. The rational thing to do is to return to the Constitution and pure capitalism. We the people should only pay for what we want from the government. Since this is too drastic a change it will take a failure to return to the Constitution. Sad but probably true. Government cannot repeal the laws of economics or those of human nature.

July 28, 2011 8:16 PM

"..pure capitalism"~

Disambiguate that for me bassboat.


July 28, 2011 9:41 PM


"..pure capitalism"

Please look up the meaning of the above two words in a dictionary for the meanings.

July 28, 2011 10:05 PM

Pure Capitalism:
"Economic system in which the principles of capitalism operate unfettered by any limiting factor such as government control or interference. By inference, government performs little except those functions that cannot be performed by any other entity."

Again, vague. There are, as you no doubt {?} know, many theories as to what "capitalism" means. A dictionary gives a definition as ambiguous as the simple phrase it 'defines'.

"Laissez-faire: describes an environment in which transactions between private parties are free from state intervention, including restrictive regulations, taxes, tariffs and enforced monopolies."

Better, but still a lot of room in the margins...

"A pure laissez-faire capitalist society has never existed. The closest any country has come to pure capitalism is 19th century America."

Now here, with this sentence, we have at least a historical era to investigate. So, what do you know of the history of 19th century laissez-faire capitalism?
This was the time of the Industrial Revolution. The era of the 'Robber Barons," of sweatshops, and indentured workers in 'Company Towns', of grueling sunrise to sunset work days, and child labor.

Hardly a paradise one would look forward to a return to. Or do you disagree? Is this the type of world you would like to see return?

If so, the world ahead will be very much like that. For that world was really the industrial version of feudalism. And that is what lies ahead under the New world Order; a global neofeudal state or global gulag.

This is the world that the psychotic ravings of your heroen Ayn Rand would produce.
You are welcome to it comrade. For myself I would prefer a more rational mixed economy approach.

July 28, 2011 10:38 PM


Your reply is like most of your posts, shallow. Please do not ask me for any more responses. Bassboat

July 28, 2011 11:02 PM

"Shallow" {grin} I won't ask you for anymore responses bassboat, because you haven't any idea of what you are talking about. I thought an illustration of that fact was in order.

Capitalism defined by Merriam’s Online:
“An economic system characterized by private or corporate ownership of capital goods, by investments that are determined by private decision, and by prices, production, and the distribution of goods that are determined mainly by competition in a free market.”

Of course the caveat is in the word “mainly” in the last part of the sentence.
This definition is the PR version given by pundits. In fact the version we see today of 'capitalism, is far from “free market” - it is controlled and manipulated markets by high finance.

The reality is "capitalism" is defined by 'capital'. Capital is 'finance', not production. Capitalism has always been the manipulation of finance. It has never been about "free trade," the two have nothing whatsoever to do with one another. The exchange of commodities whether barter, or with an agreed upon medium is free trade.
The production of "Capital" is the business of banking, and lending, and in this nation banking based in usury.

July 28, 2011 11:23 PM

As is said, “be careful of what you wish for...you just might get it.~ww

July 28, 2011 11:37 PM

Extreme conservatives push for tax cuts ... but just for the wealthy.
Extreme liberals are against all tax cuts, believing that we need higher taxes to pay for government programs ... and that taxes somehow won't create any drag on the economy.

Both extremes are wrong.

In fact, tax cuts for the middle class and poor stimulate the economy, but tax cuts for the wealthy hurt the economy.
This is actually a very simple concept, although some politicians and economists unintentionally or intentionally muddy the waters.
The Bush tax cuts accrued disproportionately to the wealthy. The Tax Policy Center shows that 65 percent of the dollar value of the Bush tax cuts accrued to the top quintile, while 20 percent went to the top 0.1 percent of income earners.

If you want to talk about wealth redistribution, there it is.
G.Washington's blog

July 28, 2011 11:53 PM

Ayn Rand is a textbook sociopath. In her notebooks Ayn Rand worshiped a notorious serial murderer-dismemberer, and used this killer as an early model for the type of "ideal man"
Back in the late 1920s, as Ayn Rand was working out her philosophy, she became enthralled by a real-life American serial killer, William Edward Hickman, whose gruesome, sadistic dismemberment of 12-year-old girl named Marion Parker in 1927 shocked the nation. Rand filled her early notebooks with worshipful praise of Hickman. According to biographer Jennifer Burns, author of Goddess of the Market, Rand was so smitten with Hickman that she modeled her first literary creation -- Danny Renahan, the protagonist of her unfinished first novel, The Little Street -- on him.

July 29, 2011 3:28 AM

Whenever you hear politicians or Tea Partiers dividing up the world between "producers" and "collectivism," just know that those ideas and words more likely than not are derived from the deranged mind of a serial-killer groupie. When you hear them saying, "Go John Galt," hide your daughters and tell them not to talk to any strangers -- or Tea Party Republicans. And when you see them taking their razor blades to the last remaining programs protecting the middle class from total abject destitution -- Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid -- and bragging about how they are slashing these programs for "moral" reasons, just remember Ayn's morality and who inspired her.

July 29, 2011 4:12 AM

It is always interesting to see how moochers like to rationalize their stealing money with the point of a gun through taxation. The truth is hard to take when it affects one's pocketbook and Ayn Rand did a masterful job in exposing the moochers. It is no wonder that they are afraid of taking self responsibility when they can obtain free money by voting for the political czars that enslave them with a subsistent life that destroys their self worth. The moocher class will continue the musical chairs until the producers completely resign from producing. It is already happening as evidenced by the money sitting on the sidelines. Why work or invest when the government will tax you into oblivion and regulate you to the point that they make your business decisions for you. Ayn Rand's classic, Atlas Shrugged, is the best selling book next to the Bible for the last 54 years and sells more today than when it came out, which incidentally, was a best seller. The moocher class will always come up with slurs and innuendos to attempt to keep stealing money from the producers of our society. If you have not read the novel read it, and when you do, remember that this was written 54 years ago and while it is fiction, the parallels to today are scary.

July 29, 2011 10:21 AM

Are you addressing me Bassboat? Surely you aren't soliciting an answer? Lol.
Have you heard the news? Harry Potter is a hot seller too. I suppose that means that there is some sort of message that we should all get straight in our heads before we run off to tackle evil creatures pretending human-hood.

Actually I have read Atlas Shrugged...and the Bible. Other best sellers, though admittedly not literary are Big Macs, I hear also that Walmart does bang up business - yes the best things in life are honored with popularity. At least that seems to be the argument you are making Bassboat.

Atlas Shrugged is the perfect companion for the emotional, who get caught up in tales of marvel and wonder, and identify with 'heroes'...it is in fact a hero worshipers 'bible' [as you say]. But as a rational mirror of reality it is tripe. The reason for this is misidentified enemies - for the actual major moochers are the racketeers running the corporations and banks, not the people caught up in the system.

You say, "slurs and innuendos." No revelations of the sick mind behind the the ideas you have adopted. Hardly innuendo, but blatant exposure of a soulless maniac.

You are making a false argument above. The banks and politicians manipulated this crisis, not the average sucker on main-street. The money is stalled because they want it stalled.

The mass of people dependent on the government did not design this system, social engineers working for the power elite did. the "moochers" were drafted, they did not join the club voluntarily.

The bottom line is Rand seduced you with the propaganda of the psychopath, formalizing a philosophy against human empathy, pity and self awareness, and gave you an excuse for self centered hubris.
You claim that this is the foundation of "Liberty" -ignoring that the founders said in no uncertain terms that 'Responsibility' was the flip side of Liberty, and this is more than simple self responsibility, but a recognition of the 'commons' and the commonweal be attended to as well.

I see your interpretation of the ideals of justice and liberty as vulgar, base, and willfully ignorant.

Because I argue against the psychotic ravings of Rand, does not mean I support a socialist state. What I will not support however is taking a people who have been seduced and conned into this condition of weakness, and yanking the rug out from under them. Because this is EXACTLY the agenda of the con that the Racketeers in DC and on Wall Street have played on the country.

July 29, 2011 1:00 PM

Willy, you're all over the place on capitalism. You respond cynically when anyone uses fiction to support a political belief yet your view of capitalism and the Industrial Revolution is the Upton Sinclair view, full of lies and exaggeration. The child labor of the British Industrial Revolution has nothing whatsoever to do with American Capitalism.

I would expound more but we are wildly off-topic here, and I've been scolded about that.

July 29, 2011 1:26 PM

Only moochers can be blind to the self destruction that they wreak upon themselves. It's a pity that they cannot understand pure capitalism and its benefits for all. Before capitalism there were the royalty and the peasants, it was only through pure capitalism that property rights came to pass. I do not think that we want to go back to the prior system but we are headed that way thanks to the moochers.

Ifon, fret not about being scolded when you are right.

July 29, 2011 1:44 PM

"I would expound more but we are wildly off-topic here, and I've been scolded about that."~Ifon

So, are we seriously to contain our remarks to a discussion of the particular meeting that took place that spawned the present article?
What is the editors position on this?

I am not "all over the place on capitalism", I have explained that "capitalism" is NOT this "free trade" cover story the pundits have offered as is the 'popular fiction' of PR. "Capital" is the domain of the banks who issue, and the ponzi scheme con the bankers and the corporations that grew up around them play in the casino of Wall St.

So now explain to me how Thomas Jefferson was some sort of 'socialist moocher' for explaining this with these remarks;

“If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issuance of their currency, first by inflation and then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them will deprive the people of all their property until their children will wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered."

July 29, 2011 2:08 PM

If you actually believe that child labor and horific conditions did not exist in America during the Industrial Revolution, that it is all a fiction made up by Upton Sinclair - then you should look up some of the photgraphic images by Lewis Hines taken during this period. Read some of the testimony of those who lived such horrific lives.
Read some REAL history rather than the 'right-wing' apologia you seem so steeped in.

July 29, 2011 2:32 PM

I have no "humble opinions", my opinions are based on research and facts, on the lessons of history.
I speak to social engineering and the PR propaganda that has brought this nation and the world to this crisis - one which is bound to be resolved through the synthesis of the Hegelian Dialectic. This is only so because of the enforced ignorance of this pathological paradigm.
While we squabble here amongst ourselves the fruition of this sinister agenda takes place before our very eyes. It is maintaining the myths propagated by this system that has divided and conquered the United States, and with it the planet.

Again, the greatest "moochers" to ever inhabit this world are those who have put together this racket, who have conned the wealth of the people and put them in debt bondage. Meanwhile the people go for each others throats rather than waking up to this, and continue supporting the very system set out for their ruin.

Orpheus whispers, “perhaps it is best to die in their sleep”...I will not, while it is still within my power to make a warning. But if you will not hear, it is your own choice to embrace your naivete and drown in your own willful ignorance.

July 29, 2011 3:08 PM

The moochers of the world use the tactic of pointing to time frame in the past as being egregious which it is by today's standards. Mankind started out in caves and from there went to the moon. Were there episodes that were terrible? Yes there were but you will note that mankind's greatest achievements for a vast majority of the people occurred under pure capitalism. The moocher wants to keep one enslaved to the government dole. He has been taught that it is the only fair way or to state it another way, steal from someone more successful than he is. What the moocher really hates is freedom other wise why would he look to the government for answers as he did when he was growing up and looking to his parents for sustenance.
"The Virtue of Selfishness" by Ayn Rand would be an excellent eyeopener for anyone on this site with the exception of the moocher class on the site. After reading that, "Capitalism:The Unknown Ideal" will give you clarity on capitalism and why looking out for yourself first is actually looking out for your fellow man. The myth of altruism is exposed for what it is, mooching.

July 29, 2011 4:10 PM

Taking this statement from the headline of the article as part of the legitimate topiic, I will make this final comment:

The problem as always is Amerikans do not, and have never understood the monetary system. This is why they are so easily conned by the racketeers in DC. And those racketeers compose both synthetic parties.

This, what is happening today is the fruition of the scheme set up on Jekyll Island in 1910 and crammed through a criminal congressional procedure on Christmas Eve in 1913.
This is the END GAME of the Rothschild Zionist Banking Cabal.
It opens the gates to the New World Order.

July 29, 2011 4:17 PM

"It takes a lot to destroy a country"

This is the portion of headline I failed to note in my comment above.

July 29, 2011 4:20 PM

"Mankind started out in caves and from there went to the moon. Were there episodes that were terrible? Yes there were but you will note that mankind's greatest achievements for a vast majority of the people occurred under pure capitalism..."~Bassboat

Again Bassboat, nothing has occurred in this nation under "pure capitalism." When "we went to the moon" the US was under the very same system of manipulated creditor finance as it is today.

This "moocher" nonsense jabberwacky from your psycho heroin is jejune beyond the pale.

You can spout as much of your selfishness is the real 'morality' blather as you wish. Let a candid world decide.


July 29, 2011 4:33 PM

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