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Open Thread for Night Owls
Robert C. Koehler is an award-winning, Chicago-based journalist His new book is Courage Grows Strong at the Wound. At New. Clear. Vision., he writes On God, Money and Planet Earth:
“These summits [like Rio+20] have failed for the same reason that the banks have failed,” George Monbiot wrote recently in The Guardian/UK. “Political systems that were supposed to represent everyone now return governments of millionaires, financed by and acting on behalf of billionaires. The past 20 years have been a billionaires’ banquet.”

I add my voice to this frustration in order to raise a single question: What if the problem is deeper than greed, or the evil rich? Seldom does the analysis get beyond the concept of greed, whether corporate or individual. Instead, an obvious solution is advanced: Get the greedy ones out of power. And there the analysis tends to stop, because the path to doing so quickly gets incredibly vague.

Whatever the divide between the 1 percent, or the .0001 percent, and the rest of us, there’s enough general prosperity in the system to implicate almost everyone in the habitual consumption of corporate products, tying our self-interest to systematic environmental destruction. Half the population is in denial that this is happening and the other half feels mostly powerless despair. And even when we think we’ve won the election, the victors turn out to be beholden to the same hidden interests. The system continues unabated.

What generally remains unquestioned is the nature of money itself.

In his book Sacred Economics, Charles Eisenstein point out that our notion of spirit “is that of something separate and nonworldly, that yet can miraculously intervene in material affairs, and that even animates and directs them in some mysterious way.

“It is hugely ironic and hugely significant,” he continues, “that the one thing on the planet most closely resembling the forgoing conception of the divine is money. It is an invisible, immortal force that surrounds and steers all things, omnipotent and limitless, an ‘invisible hand’ that, it is said, makes the world go ’round.”

Or, if it so chooses, money can decide to make the world uninhabitable. It works in mysterious ways…

Eisenstein’s book is one of the few analyses I know of that attempts to explain money in terms larger than its own. I recommend it highly, and offer a brief synthesis of his analysis in an attempt to put Rio+20 into a context larger than “why bother?”

The destructive nature of our current monetary system, according to Eisenstein, is due to that which backs it, rendering helpless everyone who deals with money, because what backs it becomes what we are, in essence, forced to worship. If gold backs money, people worship gold. But some time ago, our monetary system evolved beyond the backing of material substances. Money, now an electronic notation on a computer screen, is backed by none other than growth itself—by the creation of more money.


Blast from the Past. At Daily Kos on this date in 2010:

Not having to run for anything is obviously quite the truth serum. Check out this bit of electoral commentary from outgoing U.S. Senator Robert Bennett of Utah:
"As I look out at the political landscape now, I find plenty of slogans on the Republican side, but not very many ideas," Bennett told The Ripon Society.

"Indeed, if you raise specific ideas and solutions, as I’ve tried to do on health care with [Oregon Democratic Sen.] Ron Wyden, you are attacked with the same vigor as we’ve seen in American politics all the way back to slavery and polygamy; you are attacked as being a wimp, insufficiently pure, and unreliable."

There, of course, is the natural urge to convict Bennett of sour grapes, given that his own party unceremoniously dumped him in the Utah state conventions in early May. However, it is worth noting that his condemnation came in the context of his predicting that Republicans will reclaim the House and quite possibly the Senate. His greater concern is that even if snappy sloganeering carries the day in November, the Republicans will not hold any newfound majority with their current "devoid of ideas" status.

Here's hoping that America's voters can see through the emptiness of the contemporary Republican Party, the way that Bob Bennett apparently has.


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Comment Preferences

  •  424,123 registered users on dKos now. (19+ / 0-)

    Here are the 10 newest registered users on dKos.  Hope to see their comments and diaries here soon!  (If they're not all spammers.)

    johannesmcqu711
    ntbjtnse11
    linokronborg411
    danteshapiro1129
    wykicivsuka447
    angefenger616
    rushordertees
    matth3ieuhugh62
    simonfedders245
    lindslind335


    And since our society is obsessed with numbers that end in a lot of zeros as milestones, here's a special shoutout to users:
    #423,100: noutrojas615
    #423,200: hermansampso512
    #423,300: kaismcculloc512
    #423,400: aloiskramer410 (spammer)
    #423,500: joesephwiggi1025
    #423,600: elwinfisker910
    #423,700: nigijoyner1128
    #423,800: tombradshaw614
    #423,900: devinlaustse820 (spammer)
    #424,000: alfredomcclu923
    #424,100: jonahmccarty36

    We've added a whopping 1,089 more users in just the last 24 hours.  This is a continuation going back to May where we've been absolutely flooded with new users.  I'm pretty sure almost all of these new users are spammers or bots.  Notice how they all have a number at the end.  And the rate is getting faster, people.  What are they planning?


    And for your Diary Rescue music pleasure, here's Beauty and the Beast's "Little Town".


    The reason I bring this up now is because of the video that's been going crazy viral this week, the parody "Beauty and the Beat".

  •  Anyone else noticed that... (18+ / 0-)

    a lot of right-wing commenters continue to claim that Romneycare is constitutional and Obamacare is unconstitutional (SCOTUS' ruling notwithstanding)?

    Apparently a lot of people subscribe to Rand Pauls' legal theories.

    :-)

  •  Anyone else think that... (21+ / 0-)

    some of these GOP governors who are planning to defy the court's ruling (RE: Obamacare) will change their tune after Romney doesn't choose them to be his VP?

    :-)

  •  So on Up with Chris Hayes this morning... (17+ / 0-)

    Glenn Greenwald was defending Citizens United because of free speech, and noted that the ACLU supported it as well, and is OPPOSED to any kind of constitutional amendment that has been discussed here and in other liberal circles to stop the flood of billionaires trying to buy our elections.

    This is a case where absolutism can go off the fucking rails.

    He tried to make the case that billionaires have ALWAYS been able to influence elections, as if that makes things any better, while Chris pointed out that even though they had the ability, they've never done so to the current extent because it simply wasn't the "norm", which does account for something.

    Then in the second hour, Kris Kobach was on for almost the entire second hour to talk and answer questions from the panel about illegal immigration.  Everyone on the panel and Chris asked questions, except for Greenwald.  Was surprised he stayed silent the entire time Kobach was there.  Would've thought for sure he'd ask him a question about the civil liberties of undocumented people.

    My cynical side said it's because it wasn't anti-Obama enough, so he didn't say anything.  But that's just my cynical side.

    •  Gramatically, Speech Freedom is a Right of the (5+ / 0-)

      speech itself, not of the people.

      The 1st Amendment does not apply to the people. Press freedom is a freedom of corporations, "press" being a corporate behavior. Speech freedom is a freedom of the expression, not the expressor; regardless of who or what generates the speech, the speech becomes unassailable and liberated from checks and balances.

      And there exists no Right of the People to Know.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 08:46:10 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  So we can give corporations the death penalty? (5+ / 0-)

      And seeing as how they're "people" now, I guess that means we can send Wall Street to Gitmo if they melt down the economy now too.

      I mean, if you melt down the entire US economy, that makes you an economic terrorist in my mind.

      Chicago--Proud Home of the 1908 World Series Champion Chicago Cubs

      by Jeff Y on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 08:48:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  ACLU is currently arguing that (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BruinKid

      Convicted sex predators, including pedophiles, should have unlimited access to social media sites that children use, like Facebook, even though many predators use these sites to lure children to begin with.

      http://www.businessweek.com/...

      I admire much of the work the ACLU does, including some the average American finds infuriating, mostly around prisoner rights.  And it's good that someone defends absolute rights.

      But I could never be a member because of cases like this. Freedom of speech does not, IMO, include freedom to "friend" anyone in the community when the community has said very explicitly that given the heinous nature of your past acts and the probability  of reoffending,  there are members you're not allowed to approach.

      And given how many Kossacks eschew Facebook, Twitter, etc, these can't be all that necessary to be reintegrated into everyday life.

      I dunno....

      © grover


      So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

      by grover on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 11:15:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  "These summits [like Rio+20] have failed for the " (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jeff Y, antirove, Saint Jimmy
    "... same reason that the banks have failed,” George Monbiot wrote recently in The Guardian/UK. “Political systems that were supposed to represent everyone now return governments of millionaires, financed by and acting on behalf of billionaires. The past 20 years have been a billionaires’ banquet.” "
    the multi-million/billionaires scoff and laugh at us, as if we are so puny. WHAT WILL YOU DO TO STAND UP AND FIGHT BACK?

    YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE RICH TO WANT SOMETHING BACK FOR YOUR TAX MONEY OTHER THAN WARS. OUR ECONOMY IS BASED ON WEAPONS MANUFACTURING AND KILLING PEOPLE. ...SOMEDAY WE SHALL ALL BE ONE... WHY FIGHT YOURSELF???

    by theChild on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 08:35:04 PM PDT

  •  Check out (6+ / 0-)

    "We don't need someone who can think. We need someone with enough digits to hold a pen." ~ Grover Norquist

    by Lefty Coaster on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 08:36:04 PM PDT

  •  RE: Judge blocks Mississippi TRAP law... (8+ / 0-)

  •  amazing how we fall back to the 19th Century (5+ / 0-)

    yet again. Paulite mania on CSpan recently: metal maniacs http://www.c-span.org/...

    The destructive nature of our current monetary system, according to Eisenstein, is due to that which backs it, rendering helpless everyone who deals with money, because what backs it becomes what we are, in essence, forced to worship. If gold backs money, people worship gold. But some time ago, our monetary system evolved beyond the backing of material substances. Money, now an electronic notation on a computer screen, is backed by none other than growth itself—by the creation of more money.

    Präsidentenelf-maßschach"Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) "Ensanguining the skies; How heavily it dies; Into the west away;;Past touch and sight and sound; Not further to be found,;How hopeless under ground; Falls the remorseful day".政治委员, 政委!

    by annieli on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 08:37:54 PM PDT

  •  Time to Cut the Climate Gordian Knot. (4+ / 0-)

    I think climate science needs to assemble a mission to top ownership. I'll wave ignorant hands about specifying who exactly that might be, other than generally those not structurally, permanently dependent on big dirty energy.

    The mission would be to petition them to fight to help civilization stop destroying human habitability of the earth.

    While my fear is that this would be abject failure --after all, even now there does not exist a billionaire fighting to make just the USA a more progressive nation-state-- it has to be tried and tried NOW.

    Even if humanity counts for nothing, science needs to learn immediately if its ownership intends to exterminate civilization.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 08:39:49 PM PDT

  •  thought it interesting when AP reported (8+ / 0-)

    four days ago that the CEO of Exxon/Mobil admitted that the burning of fossil fuels does in fact warm the planet.

    Of course, Rex Tillerson denied that that there were any real measurable adverse effects on the planet that scientists could prove.  But no surprise there.

    But his admission: where do the deniers go now?

    So now we're only talking about how much and when.  That's a start to a conversation.

    So let's have at it.

    •  Just the next step in the PR formula... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      basquebob, antirove, maryabein

      ...developed 70 years ago.

      Deny, deny, deny until you can't deny anymore.  Then once it's undeniable, diminish the impact.  Once you can no longer deny the impact, move on to step three...

      It worked for 70 years with tobacco/lung cancer, and it's working now with global warming.  

      •  That's right. Deny, deny, deny, and when you can't (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        maryabein

        … deny any more, declare the topic "old news," deride people who "still" insist on debating said "old news," emphasize the urgency of focusing on the future a.k.a. looking forward, not back, and only when absolutely forced to, negotiate a settlement with federal and state governments for a token penalty amounting to pennies on the dollar.

        The Dutch kids' chorus Kinderen voor Kinderen wishes all the world's children freedom from hunger, ignorance, and war.

        by lotlizard on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 02:16:48 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The election results in Mexico... (4+ / 0-)

    Good news for Mitt Romney, or great news for Mitt Romney?

    ;-)

  •  Money has the face of the boss. (4+ / 0-)

    There is another good text that addresses money/capital and its quasi-religious aspects: Wall Street, by Doug Henwood.

    You can download/print the book for free, here.

    But to question money is to question capitalism itself, and that is not something that mainstream thinkers do, at least not in this country.  The entire edifice runs on the idea of

    M + L ----> M+

    regardless of the costs to labor or the environment or anything else.  There is a reason the options are denial or despair.

    "The attack on the truth by war begins long before war starts and continues long after a war ends." -Julian Assange

    by Pierro Sraffa on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 08:52:22 PM PDT

  •  New Yorker on the Mexican drug war (6+ / 0-)

    I read this incredibly depressing piece about the drug war spreading into formerly peaceful areas of Mexico.  With the presidential election there happening right now, the article makes it somewhat clear that the cartels and the drugs and the violence will continue to go on, and that none of the candidates, not even Obrador (who I remember Kossacks wanted to win the last time around) is clean when it comes to relationships with the cartels.

    The six-year Presidency of Felipe Calderón is coming to an end, and this election can fairly be seen as a referendum on his military-led offensive against drug traffickers, which has cost some fifty thousand lives and left the country psychologically battered. Calderón’s National Action Party (PAN) is far behind in the polls. Its Presidential candidate, Josefina Vázquez Mota, campaigns under the slogan “Josefina diferente,” hoping to distance herself from Calderón, but she served in his Cabinet, and her proposals for restoring security are not notably different from current policies. Peña Nieto’s security platform is nothing special, either. He might eventually return the Army to its barracks and, like virtually every recent President, revamp the federal police. His slogan is “Tú me conoces”—“You know me”—which many people find amusing, since they don’t know him at all. He was the governor of Mexico State, a populous but small horseshoe around Mexico City, and his time as a national politician has been short and heavily stage-managed, with limited press access (and no more literacy tests). Mexicans do know his party, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), which ruled the country from 1929 until 2000. Throwing out the corrupt, authoritarian PRI, in 2000, was a great moment for democracy in Latin America. Now it seems that Mexican voters are poised to bring the Party back.

    The PAN is often described as center-right, the PRI as center-left, and the country’s third party, the Party of the Democratic Revolution (P.R.D.), as left-wing. But these labels carry little weight in Mexico today. “The parties have no ideology,” a magazine editor in Mexico City told me. “That aspect is meaningless. Power here is about money.” The P.R.D. candidate, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, a popular former mayor of Mexico City, who nearly won the Presidency in 2006, has moved toward the center this year, dropping his confrontational rhetoric. Indeed, in 2010 the P.R.D. and the purportedly rightist PAN combined forces successfully, backing the same candidates for governor in three state elections. The PAN and the PRI are both avidly pro-business. But it was the PRI that presided over the privatization of more than a thousand state companies during the nineteen-eighties and nineties. Carlos Salinas, during his sexenio, privatized hundreds of companies, as well as Mexico’s banking system, turning a lucky circle of his friends into billionaires. This creation of a new economic élite, with effective monopolies in fields such as transportation, mining, and telecommunications, resembles the creation, around the same time, of the new crony-capitalist oligarchy in Russia. And in Mexico nearly all its beneficiaries owe their fortunes to the PRI, not the PAN.

    If there really is a politician who's clean and wants to stop the cartels, they'd have been murdered already.

    Seriously.  It's that bad.

    •  Sounds like shock doctrine to me. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BruinKid, antirove

      if a habitat is flooded, the improvement for target fishes increases by an infinite percentage...because a habitat suitability index that is even a tiny fraction of 1 is still infinitely higher than zero, which is the suitability of dry land to fishes.

      by mrsgoo on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 10:31:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Trix scopped the headline "Pena Nieto" wins. n/t (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BruinKid
    •  I never much doubted the PRI would return (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BruinKid, Meteor Blades

      to power. They keep saying this is not the old PRI.

      But stories of votes being bought are being told far and wide, which is certainly how the old PRI worked.  And the old PRI was able to work out a deal with the cartels for an uneasy peace.

      Is Peña Nieto the old PRI? Is there a new PRI?

      My thoughts and prayers go to mis hermanos in México.

      I honestly don't know what is best for them from a political viewpoint.

       I just hope that whatever is best, it happens rápidamente.

      © grover


      So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

      by grover on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 11:47:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  R-money was a rolling stone (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Aunt Pat, SoCaliana

    Chicago--Proud Home of the 1908 World Series Champion Chicago Cubs

    by Jeff Y on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 08:56:09 PM PDT

  •  Yes, Rmoney and global warming are melded in an (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Aunt Pat, JeffW

    unbreakable embrace.

    Proud to be a Truth Vigilante

    by Calvino Partigiani on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 08:56:10 PM PDT

  •  DC Power Outage (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW, mightymouse

    The power outage silver lining could manifest itself when the Republicans smell the foul odor of Boehner under-boob sweat. They may just begin to rethink about global warming after a whiff or two of Boehner's Orange Tang pungent scent. Tears galore...

  •  Mandatory Romney family this week. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Aunt Pat, JML9999, grover

    http://livewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/...

    The adults also take time in the evenings to have serious family meetings.

       

    At night, the adults gather for family meetings, with each evening focused on a frank and full discussion of a different son’s career moves and parenting worries.
    In the Romney family, the trips to Wolfeboro are mandatory, according to the Post’s story.

    "Go well through life"-Me (As far as I know)

    by MTmofo on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 09:10:54 PM PDT

    •  Ah yes, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MTmofo

      Mandatory Fun.

      Like the company holiday party held the Friday night before Christmas and the first night of Chanukah, when good gosh, you don't have anything else you'd rather be doing.

        You're going to show up, darn it. And you
      ARE going to enjoy yourself!

      At least the company holiday party includes booze, usually lots of it, although RomneyFest probably includes bonfires built with bundles of $100 bills. So that's fun too.

      © grover


      So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

      by grover on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 11:55:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Cut the cord, kids. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JeffW, MTmofo

      Cut the cord.

      The oldest son is what? 42? Time to get a life, boys.

      Geesh.

  •  plantation thugs: back in control of the U.S.? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Aunt Pat, grover, Meteor Blades

    How a brutal strain of conservative American aristocrats have come to rule America: that's the subtitle of this article by Sara Robinson featured over on Salon today.  If you ever wonder how the U.S. moved from a class of noblesse oblige, communitarian, pro-public-education patricians of the Roosevelt sort to the current stomp-the-windpipes-of-the-Untermenschen vermin, Ms. Robinson offers a thesis, as well as just good, engaging writing.

    •  Thanks. That looks great. I added to my (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      this just in

      Phone's reading list, so I can read it when I'm fully awake.

      © grover


      So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

      by grover on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 11:59:29 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The Newsroom did well in the second episode /nt (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JML9999

    Präsidentenelf-maßschach"Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) "Ensanguining the skies; How heavily it dies; Into the west away;;Past touch and sight and sound; Not further to be found,;How hopeless under ground; Falls the remorseful day".政治委员, 政委!

    by annieli on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 09:35:49 PM PDT

  •  Reading Other People's Minds? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JML9999, annieli, grover

    16+ mins.
    At the end, Ms. Saxe states the Pentagon has shown an interest in the study. Interesting---nah!

    •  Men who Stare at Goats (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Aunt Pat, grover, SoCaliana

      And The Women who Love Them

      Next on The View.................

      Not blaming Bush for the mess we're in, is like not blaming a train engineer for a fatal train wreck because he's no longer driving the train.

      by JML9999 on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 09:40:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Women who talk to Dogs (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JML9999, SoCaliana

        Dogs that talk back
        And the men who love them.

        Now playing at my house!

        (oh sorry. I just thought ....Never mind. ::blushing::)

        © grover


        So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

        by grover on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 12:02:11 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Seems like there must be some rich people... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SoCaliana

    ...behind many of the green power companies.

    Why aren't they getting politically involved?

    I know they can't match up against the Big Oil Boys, but they have to know that they'll pretty much be shut down if the Repubs have their way.

    What more motivation do they need?

    "The disturbing footage depicts piglets being drop kicked and swung by their hind legs. Sows are seen being kicked and shoved as they resist leaving their piglets."

    by Bush Bites on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 09:38:24 PM PDT

  •  Girl in the Olympic trials with the face-plant (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades

    I love her. Got up and finished her routine. With a vengeance.

    Take that, Valina challenged, penis-enhanced State legislators.

    Eat this - Bitches. Girls are not a pre-existing condition.

    Worked. Dumb-asses got worked. On "TeeVee."

    Awesome.

    I want a living planet, not just a living room.

    by Anthony Page aka SecondComing on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 09:42:39 PM PDT

  •  The last time I checked (0+ / 0-)

    "backed by none other than growth itself" was
    a fairly reasonable description of a Ponzzi Scheme.

    The Irony is destroying the real World so that a Few
    Monkeys can collect more artificial tokens called dollars.

    When the Real World Goes down the Drain, the
    Artificial Token exchange system goes down the Drain
    Along with It. The People running things Don't seem
    to Care if that Happens or Not.

    On Giving Advice: Smart People Don't Need It and Stupid People Don't Listen

    by Brian76239 on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 09:43:24 PM PDT

  •  The problem that I see is the reward system (6+ / 0-)

    The current system is designed to reward power and status, not economic value added.

    Working in a hierarchy as you move up the ranks you expect to be paid more, but you move further and further away from where the real value-added is created in the product or service. In fact, by the time you reach the third level of management above the work floor, the denizens of that level rarely know what the product exactly is and certainly know little about how it is assembled or created. And the decisions management makes?

    Ask Circuit City about the decision to fire all the experienced sales people and hire much cheaper new sales people without benefits to sell for the Christmas rush. They did not know the product and did not know how to help the customers buy Christmas electronics. So the company went into bankruptcy.

    And the top managers each got a $1 million bonus because their "expertise" was required to get the company through the rigors of the bankruptcy.

    Bain Capital and the other vulture capital investors use the power of large amounts of money to take the ownership of a firm away from the prior owners, then the replace the management with their ignorant stooges and loot the company of things like the pension plan and under-invest in the future. They collect their loot and run leaving a much weaker company behind. If they are lucky they hire decent managers to save it in spite of the damage from the vulture looters.

    Large amounts of money are used as power, not as knowledge and skills to actually build businesses. There are exceptions but they are becoming rarer because bankers know nothing outside of financial statements. Show me the financial statement that can deign and assemble an automobile.  

    The US Supreme Court has by its actions and rhetoric ceased to be legitimate. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot - over

    by Rick B on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 09:50:25 PM PDT

  •  Took the weekend off (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Aunt Pat, JeffW, grover

    from politics. I highly recommend that everyone do that at least four more times before the election. The blood pressure slows, flowers smell sweeter and I feltl like having consortium again. Sorry. You didn't need to know that.

    Get right back up on it though. There's work to do.

  •  Great observation (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Aunt Pat, JeffW, lotlizard, mightymouse

    Money is based on energy.  Essentially a dollar is valuable because you can purchase oil with it.  That's the only reason people want dollars.  That's what it is backed by.  For energy to be separated from Global Warming requires us to have some other kind of energy.  It will happen.  It will change everything.  It has to.

    •  No, money is based on belief. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      grover

      It has value only insofar as another person will accept it in payment or trade, believing that they will be able to pass it on in exchange for something of the same value that they gave you in exchange.

      I once read a commandment  'thou shalt not have false gods before me.'  

      We've made a belief system out of our exchange tokens, and worship them;   the bigger the pile of little false gods, the more worship for it, and respect for the owner.  

      Not for nothing were the Puritans sure that those who became wealthy were closer to God.  Some kind of serious mixup in theology, there.

      We've lost the original meaning of money; it was supposed to be a medium of exchange, and a way of fairly allocating wealth to laborers, owners, planners, and suppliers of materials in exchange for their contributions in creating wealth for society .  

      Just as corporations were supposed to be chartered by the state in order to accomplish something for the state, not to become an end in itself for making money, or to become equal to actual living people.  

      This confusion has led to money (the little gods) being spent by corporations (which pretend to be living people)  to purchase speech to elect our politicians who will make more speeches, and make decisions that will send us all to hell.

      Sad.

      •  I don't believe that (0+ / 0-)

        Nobody sitting in a bank in London is going to put their life on the line for a belief.

        The dollar switched from being backed by gold (which is no longer the most important substance) to being backed by oil...which is obviously the most important substance.

        The problem now being, (all fracking aside) our economy will freak out when the amount of oil can no longer increase each year.

        Enter..new forms of alternative energy that will be cheap enough and clean enough and plentiful enough to create complete chaos in our economy for several glorious decades.

        Future so bright we'll have to wear shades.

    •  Yep. What props up the dollar is the agreement (0+ / 0-)

      … imposed on oil producers by the U.S. and the Saudis that worldwide, all crude oil transactions are to be conducted in dollars.

      See Robert Newman's theatrical presentation and video, "The History of Oil."

      The Dutch kids' chorus Kinderen voor Kinderen wishes all the world's children freedom from hunger, ignorance, and war.

      by lotlizard on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 02:24:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Poor or wealthy, if you care about your children, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Aunt Pat, lgmcp

    or yourself, it would be prudent to consider human biology.  Polluting the air we breath paves the road to early death from asthma, allergies, or a lifetime of suffering.

    Silly me to be speaking on things outside the here and now.  I'm a hedonist parted from the money in the equation.

    Photos from Beijing indicate a booming market for worthless face masks.

  •  Air Force C-130 down in S.D. (6+ / 0-)

    There appears to have been survivors. The plane was fighting a fire in the Black Hills.

    http://rapidcityjournal.com/...

    This is going to be a rough summer. The fires have started two months early in my neck of the woods.

  •  Global warming. The end of everything. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mightymouse

    The hope is that once all the facts are gathered, the truth will defeat the lies in time to save us.
    In all seriousness, will it?

    Fuck Big Brother...from now on, WE'RE watching.

    by franklyn on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 10:10:30 PM PDT

  •  apropos of nothing whatsoever... (0+ / 0-)

    In the song "A Little Bit of Soap" by The Jarmels, what is the lyric in the first verse?  It sounds like:

    A little bit of soap
    Will wash away your lipstick on my face
    A little bit of soap
    Will never, never never ever erase
    The pain in my heart
    And my ass
    As I go through the lonely years
    A little bit of soap will never wash away
    My tears...

    That can't be right, right?  

    Sorry, it came on iTunes shuffle, and I just had to ask.  

  •  Climate change will solve itself (4+ / 0-)

    Meaning, it will solve us by just reducing us to a minor species of limited numbers. The planet and the laws of physics really don't care about our Gods, monetary status, skin color, IQ, GDP, or whatever other bullshit measurements of our self-declared "superiority" is. Evolution will roll on with the trillion-year experiment, and favoring a different genus with perfect conditions to be fruitful and multiply. The only note to our phase of existence will be "High intelligence and capacity to conceptualize does not prevent a species from destroying itself."

    The people demand the fall of this regime ...

    by fourthcornerman on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 10:49:53 PM PDT

  •  In case you missed it from earlier today (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jan4insight, SoCaliana

    My June White House Photo Diary:

    A look inside the White House for the month of June. All photographs were taken by the White House Photography staff lead by Pete Souza.

    June White House Photo Diary


  •  MB (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mightymouse

    You often tip to it, but you continue to hesitate in calling it absolutely...

    I admire you the most, on dkos.  You're the one who dares to get closest to the truth.  Most of the others are still caught up in past battles.  The battles our true enemy wishes us to waste our energies on.  They don't see, or refuse to acknowledge, what we're really facing.

    Yet, you also continue to neuter yourself.  You stop short of outright stating the absolute, and obvious, truth.  In your posts it's often on the tip of your tongue.  It's the subtext that can't be mentioned, because both sides have their sacred cows.

    Keep pushing.  Don't settle.  We have no hope if we do.  And we need people like you to push the truth.

    What's wrong under Republicans is still wrong under Democrats.

    by gila on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 10:58:46 PM PDT

  •  I wonder whether (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades

    Mr. Koehler read my book, "Money as Information"?

    www.tableofgold.com

    I hadn't known about Modern Monetary Theory before I published it, but it seems that the evolving concept of money I explored is a necessary basis for MMT.

    Now as a member of the Money and Public Purpose group here at Daily Kos, I'm happy to be joined with Letsgetitdone, Dustin Mineau and others who diary here regularly on economic matters.

    Gotta plug MMT whenever possible because it is truly the Progressive approach to our economic woes.

    Please follow Money and Public Purpose and check out our diaries. Kossack Letsgetitdone is the most indefatigable diarist here on this topic.

    And many thanks for this diary.
    .
    .
    .


    For the first time in human history, we possess both the means for destroying all life on Earth or realizing a paradise on the planet--Michio Kaku.

    by psyched on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 11:00:49 PM PDT

  •  Capitalism Makes the Rules (0+ / 0-)

    A capitalistic economy may be the best economy in the world so far but it comes with a price. Capitalism brings not only greed but a focus by those who profit the highest in society, on a one-vision goal and that is to make more money.

    If we wish to take money out of the equation in politics, then we need to take money out of politics by changing our campaign system by making it entirely dependent on public financing, and thereby making any private contributions illegal.

    We put our elected leaders at a disadvantage to follow the will of the People and not just those who fill their campaign coffers.

    Captialism works fine as long as we apply strigent rules that keep it from manipulating our political system and the only way to do that is to make sure they're completely divided.

    Rule the Day, Let not the Day Rule You.

    by fidlerten on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 11:46:51 PM PDT

  •  The captive mind - not able to see options (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lgmcp

    This was an earlier comment that is again relevant.

    http://www.dailykos.com/...

  •  Very thought-provoking excerpt on money (0+ / 0-)

    Interesting from first to last, but especially last:  

    But some time ago, our monetary system evolved beyond the backing of material substances. Money, now an electronic notation on a computer screen, is backed by none other than growth itself—by the creation of more money.
    A system where growth itself is the basis, is almost by definition unsustainable.  

    So, yes:  money and global warming ARE in an unbreakable embrace, or rather, are two facets of the same thing.  

    "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

    by lgmcp on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 09:22:58 AM PDT

  •  So the takeaway of that tweet is... (0+ / 0-)

    The federal courts shuts Mississippi's TRAP?

    Simple question: In the years since Republicans successfully urged the disempowering of workers and unions in the Midwest, what has happened to those states economies?

    by Stephen Daugherty on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 10:35:01 AM PDT

  •  Time isn't worth so much money anymore. (0+ / 0-)

    These days, Energy is Money. Consider the fact that the vast majority of human beings in developed countries spend their time managing far more energy consumption than they themselves produce.

    The cost of energy more closely correlates to economic performance than tax policy or anything else.

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