November 24, 2008 archive

144th Anniversary of the Sand Creek Massacre of Nov. 29th, 1864

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket…

Chief Black Kettle:

I want you to give all these chiefs of the soldiers here to understand that we are for peace, and that we have made peace, that we may not be mistaken by them for enemies.

Peace in Afghanistan

Too often I hear people speak of Afghanistan as if the war we are waging there is totally legitimate and beyond question.  Even Barack Obama has fallen into this trap.  Since the invasion of Afghanistan could be justified as hot pursuit of those who attacked us on 9/11, 2001, many continue to consider it justified seven long years later.  Nothing could be further from the truth in my opinion.


Four at Four

  1. The NY Times reports President-elect Barack Obama unveils the team to tackle the ‘Historic’ crisis in the economy. Obama will nominate to head the Treasury Department, Timothy Geithner, president of the Federal Reserve Bank in New York, and to lead the White House Economic Council, Larry Summers, Harvard economist a former Clinton Treasury Secretary.

    Obama also said “he had chosen Christina D. Romer to head his Council of Economic Advisers and Melody Barnes as director of his White House Domestic Policy Council. Ms. Romer is an economics professor at the University of California, Berkeley, while Ms. Barnes is a longtime aide to Senator Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts.”

    “While we can’t underestimate the challenges we face,” Obama said, “we also can’t underestimate our capacity to overcome them to summon that spirit of determination and optimism that has always defined us, and move forward in a new direction to create new jobs, reform our financial system, and fuel long-term economic growth.”

  2. The Kansas City Star reports Economic crisis creates a cultural divide between ‘ants’ and ‘grasshoppers’.

    Two-and-a-half millennia before anyone thought of bundling toxic derivatives, Aesop knew what bugged people.

    The foolhardy grasshopper in the ancient Greek fable “The Ant and the Grasshopper” enjoyed his summer singing while the ant worked in earnest, “toiling and moiling” to store up food. Winter came and the grasshopper, starving, took to begging from the ant colony.

    Even today, “it goes to the very marrow of American society,” said Randall Miller, a scholar of political and cultural history. “Work hard. Take responsibility for yourself. Don’t expect others to bail you out for your own bad decisions…

    “But who’s the government going to help in this economic mess? The grasshoppers!

    “I sense something building, a cultural phenomenon. A lot of resentment has surfaced, and the people in Washington are feeling it.”

    Wall Street is not just one grasshopper, but rather it is a plague of locusts.

Four at Four continues with an update on the wars of the United States and a look at Russia’s new presence in Latin America.


Bloomberg: US could lend as much as $7.4 trillion

This is NOT “Government Money.”

This is OUR money!

This is Taxpayer Money, and as a citizen and a taxpayer I hereby officially scream at the top of my lungs…


Yeah, yeah, sure, you are just “loaning” OUR money to the richest people on earth…..Riiiiiiiiiiiiiight, got it, uh huh….


Thank you.

You may now return to your regularly scheduled dystopian future.

George Bush’s War, George Bush’s Policies, George Bush’s Depression

The very pointed point of this essay is to reinforce and combat Jeffrey Lieber’s iteration of the inevitable coming media “reality,” to wit:

The Obama deficit.

The Obama recession.

Can I Get Me An Obama depression?

Obama deflation and stagflation and free-market implosion.

Obama poverty and unemployment and deflation and stock market crash and housing crisis.

The Barack Obama bank failures™. The Barack Obama layoffs©. The Barack Obama bankruptcies®.

One of the battles we will face in the coming days is beating back the media’s lazy and stupid and Right Wing driven reassignment of responsibility and blame for the sorry, sorry shape that the country and the world is in after George Bush and the Republicans were in charge of every aspect of our economy and foreign policy for the last eight years.

Let’s repeat that for emphasis….and keep repeating it. The mountain of problems we now face are a result of George Bush and the Republicans being in charge of every aspect of our economy and foreign policy for the last eight years.

What the heck, one more time…

The problems we face are a direct result of George Bush and the Republicans being in charge of every aspect of our economy and foreign policy for the last eight years.

Paying for George Bush’s War while giving George Bush’s tax cuts to the rich plunged us deep into debt, and George Bush’s ownership society created the housing bubble that is the most blatant face of the current economic apocalypse.

George Bush and the Republican Majority in Congress created the current economic crisis….while spending trillions of dollars and directly killing well over four thousand American soldiers and (literally) the uncounted deaths of a staggering number of Iraqi human beings. Period.

Wash, rinse, repeat.  

U.S. Pledges Top $7.7 Trillion to Ease Frozen Credit…

Give These Workers Their Money And Give It To Them Now!

cross-posted from The Dream Antilles

This is absolutely infuriating.  The New York Times reports on the struggle of former Mexican farm workers, some in the 80’s and 90’s, to obtain refunds from the Mexican Government of 10% of their wages that were withheld when they worked in the US under the bracero program:

FRESNO, Calif. – Here comes Abraham Franco now, 86 years old, skin leathery and bronzed from decades of work in the fields, slowly bending his small but sturdy frame into a metal chair at a faux wood office table at the Mexican Consulate here.

He still could not quite believe the news: Decades after working as a bracero, as thousands of Mexican guest farm workers were called in a program from 1942 to 1964, the Mexican government had recently agreed to a one-time payment, $3,500, of long overdue withheld wages.

The braceros are fading fast, some pushing or over 90, and are ever reliant on family and friends to get by.

Join me in the lettuce fields with Sr. Franco.  

Clemons: McCain & Obama Coordinated on Personnel

Steve Clemons Reports McCain & Obama Camps Coordinated on Building Staff Rosters for Next Government:

“…A senior Obama campaign official shared with The Washington Note that In July 2008, the McCain and Obama camps began to work secretly behind the scenes to assemble large rosters of potential personnel for the administration that only one of the candidates would lead…”

At this point, the story is as Clemons termed it, “A Scoop”, so there hasn’t been verification of this by other sources at this time.

(There’s more):

Waking up from the Bush nightmare: what’s the next dream?

This diary will suggest a sort of “Earthly dream” in light of the inspiration felt by millions to pursue the “American dream” of the age of nationalism.  I want to proceed from an assessment of where we are now, to a short discussion of how we fit into the systems of which we are a part, to a look at how our hopes and dreams may be transformed into a future of ecological dislocation and crisis.

(crossposted on Big Orange)

Open Thread


Thread over easy with a side of snarkage.

The U.S. Economy in Decline: What Stagflation Tells Us

(Cross-posted from Daily Kos)

Our economic situation has been all over the news. Banks are failing, credit is contracting, the auto industry is crying for a bailout. Clearly, the U.S. economy has gotten derailed, and we’re now faced with the unenviable task of getting it back on track. The trouble is, we don’t know which track is the right track.

Or do we?

Suppose there exists a valid interpretation of economic forces and outcomes, one that explains our current situation, yet one that no one will acknowledge, even to knock down.

About 12 years ago I picked up Cities and the Wealth of Nations: Principles of Economic Life by Jane Jacobs (better known as the author of The Death and Life of Great American Cities) at a used bookstore in upstate New York. Jacobs wrote this book in 1983, in response the emergence of stagflation. As an informed and educated layperson, she examined economic history with a critical eye and an urbanist’s heart, looking for the laws that explained what was going on — which the economic theories of the time did not.  

Monday Morning Business News

From Yahoo News Business

1 Government unveils bold plan to rescue Citigroup

By JEANNINE AVERSA, AP Economics Writer

42 mins ago

WASHINGTON – The government unveiled a bold plan Sunday to rescue Citigroup, injecting a fresh $20 billion into the troubled firm as well as guaranteeing hundreds of billions of dollars in risky assets.

The action, announced jointly by the Treasury Department, the Federal Reserve and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., is aimed at shoring up a huge financial institution whose collapse would wreak havoc on the already crippled financial system and the U.S. economy.

The sweeping plan is geared to stemming a crisis of confidence in the company, whose stock has been hammered in the past week on worries about its financial health.

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