Monday, July 11, 2011

Rome is Crumbling

$2 Trillion in crumbling infrastructure. 3 wars. $14.3 Trillion in debt. A maxed out credit limit. Divided government. Democrats who care about the welfare of everyone. Republicans who only care about tax cuts to the richest individuals and corporations. The cost of living is going up. Wages are static. Unemployment is increasing, not because of Obama, but because companies are refusing to hire new workers.

We are on the verge of an unprecedented crisis in America. We are 3 weeks away from, for the first time in our nation's history, failing to pay our nation's debts. The repercussions of a default would be catastrophic, and global. The dollar would collapse, and because it is the world's reserve currency, economies of many countries would take a huge hit. While we have had to raise the debt ceiling in the past, we have never faced this level of debt before, especially when combined with an economic crisis that was 8 years in the making. Democrats believe that closing tax loopholes in order to generate revenue is necessary, Republicans would rather see a default than agree with Obama... on anything. Social Security can not, and should not be cut. It is not an entitlement, but rather a benefit program that working people pay into over their entire working lives. The same applies to Medicare. These programs are not the source of our deficit and debts. The main causes of the mess we are in are the wars Bush started (which Obama put on the books so we could pay for them), and the tax cuts that Bush initiated (which Obama continued).

The first thing we need to do is once and for all end all 3 wars we are in. No draw-downs, no periodization of troop withdrawal, but a complete exit from Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya. Second, we need to close at least half of our overseas military bases, most of which do not benefit the security of this country or any other. In other words, the empire needs to recede. The next thing we need to do, is close all corporate tax loopholes. All of them. We need to incentivize job creation in the private sector, and penalize outsourcing and meaningless layoffs. There are 3 million available jobs in this country, and we need to create incentive for companies to fill those positions. We need to reinvest in our infrastructure. Not only would this create innumerable jobs, but it would strengthen our national security. We need to invest in education, and NOT fire teachers, firefighters and cops.

If the debt ceiling is not raised, the USA will not be able to pay its debts and the world economy will suffer. Anyone who says otherwise is a liar. The dollar is the world's reserve currency, and dozens of countries have financial interests in our country (including China, which owns 7% of the US). A default would send shockwaves through the global economy.

Republicans are holding this country and, in some respects, the world economy, hostage. If they cared about our country, they would not be putting up such a stink. The GOP raised the debt ceiling 7 times under Bush II. This is 100% about hatred for Obama and as McConnell says, "making him a one term president." President Obama has compromised, sacrificed and tried to give Republicans what they want in this debt deal, and still, the GOP refuses to cooperate. Instead, they storm out of meetings like angry toddlers. The notion that tax increases kill jobs is complete nonsense, and history has proven that. Reagan raised taxes, and it created jobs. Clinton raised taxes, and it created jobs. What does NOT create jobs is slashing tax rates for billionaires, who just hoard the wealth. The GOP lives in a fantasty world, and it's destroying this country. Not a single idea put forth by the GOP combats our national debt and our budget deficit, in fact, their plans to cut taxes and end Medicare would add $7T in debt. When are people going to wake up and stop voting for these crooks (probably never, so long as they keep pandering to a religious, scared, ignorant base)?

The bottom line is that the GOP is willing to tank the economy in order to screw Obama. It won't work. The American people will be well aware of who caused their Social Security, Veteran's Benefits, Medicare, IRS Refunds and other checks to stop coming. The American people will know whom to blame when interest rates skyrocket. The American people will know whom to blame when the dollar becomes worthless... and it sure won't be Obama.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Just A Thought...

How do we fix our economic situation? (Note: I will be writing a seperate entry regarding the debt ceiling and jobs).

What we REALLY need to do is completely do away with our debt-based economic model. We need a resource-based economy, one that thrives on innovation, invention, and people working for the betterment of everyone. The advent of technology makes this 100% possible. We have to change our way of thinking, and I think we will, and I think it's already happening.

Our system is not sustainable. The reason regulation won't fix anything is because it's too late. It's like installing seatbelts into a car that's already had an accident. The design itself needs to be changed. I'm not suggesting we all go back to being farmers, but what we need to do is the following:

1) Reform our education system into one that teaches applicable skills not only for personal survival and prosperity, but also for societal benefit (such as what Finland does... our test-based rote system is incredibly stupid).
2) We need an economic model that is not based on making obscene profits, or gambling on budled mortgages, but rather on what people can contribute to society. This means innovation, invention and technological development.
3) We need a health care system whose sole purpose is to cure disease. Treatments hinder research for cures, because treatments are what drives profits. Cures are bad business. We need a health care system that focuses on preventative medicine. This goes back to education, which should also include how to live a healthy, sustainable life.
4) We need to do away with agri-biz. Local food production, I believe, is what will sustain us after the collapse of Capitalism (mainly caused by what we've done to Capitalism), which, to all of you deniers, IS going to happen. Please reference how Cuba thrived after the fall of the USSR. It's fascinating.
5) This is absolutely critical. We have to find a source of energy that is not a fossil fuel. This means natural, clean, sustainable energy, be it from the Sun, wind, ocean or geothermal sources.
6) We need to reinvest in infrastructure. We need high speed electric rail connecting our cities.

This is just a thought.