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Obama with 4 point lead

Today's RAND American Life Panel, Obama 49 Romney 45

Chrystia Freeland, author of Plutocrats: The Rise of the New Global Super-Rich and the Fall of Everyone Else,  looks at how the 1% aren't just destroying the middle class, they are planting (and tending, and harvesting) the seeds of their own end.

...what separates successful states from failed ones is whether their governing institutions are inclusive or extractive. Extractive states are controlled by ruling elites whose objective is to extract as much wealth as they can from the rest of society. Inclusive states give everyone access to economic opportunity; often, greater inclusiveness creates more prosperity, which creates an incentive for ever greater inclusiveness.

The history of the United States can be read as one such virtuous circle. But... virtuous circles can be broken. Elites that have prospered from inclusive systems can be tempted to pull up the ladder they climbed to the top. Eventually, their societies become extractive and their economies languish.

That was the future predicted by Karl Marx, who wrote that capitalism contained the seeds of its own destruction. And it is the danger America faces today, as the 1 percent pulls away from everyone else and pursues an economic, political and social agenda that will increase that gap even further — ultimately destroying the open system that made America rich and allowed its 1 percent to thrive in the first place.

We tend to forget just how young our system of corporate capitalism really is. This economy we all sail in is a fragile, leaky ship prone to sudden failures and often in need of course correction. It's time for a big turn, a big turn if we're going to stay off the rocks.
Even as the winner-take-all economy has enriched those at the very top, their tax burden has lightened. Tolerance for high executive compensation has increased, even as the legal powers of unions have been weakened and an intellectual case against them has been relentlessly advanced by plutocrat-financed think tanks. In the 1950s, the marginal income tax rate for those at the top of the distribution soared above 90 percent, a figure that today makes even Democrats flinch. Meanwhile, of the 400 richest taxpayers in 2009, 6 paid no federal income tax at all, and 27 paid 10 percent or less. None paid more than 35 percent.
Nicholas Carnes notes that while we may argue over whose policies are most slanted toward the 1%, all too often our only choices are candidates who are in the 1%.
Elections are supposed to give us choices. We can reward incumbents or we can throw the bums out. We can choose Republicans or Democrats. We can choose conservative policies or progressive ones.

In most elections, however, we don’t get a say in something important: whether we’re governed by the rich. By Election Day, that choice has usually been made for us. Would you like to be represented by a millionaire lawyer or a millionaire businessman? Even in our great democracy, we rarely have the option to put someone in office who isn’t part of the elite.

It's certainly possible for someone who is wealthy to champion the downtrodden (witness Teddy Kennedy), but in a representative democracy, where we so rightly worry that our government doesn't align with the distribution of race and gender among the public, why are we so willing to accept a government sharply unrepresentative when it comes to class?
If millionaires were a political party, that party would make up roughly 3 percent of American families, but it would have a super-majority in the Senate, a majority in the House, a majority on the Supreme Court and a man in the White House. If working-class Americans were a political party, that party would have made up more than half the country since the start of the 20th century. But legislators from that party (those who last worked in blue-collar jobs before entering politics) would never have held more than 2 percent of the seats in Congress.
That disparity has huge consequences. It's very hard to have a government that isn't for the rich, when that government is both of and by the rich.

Frank Bruni shows that, if you ever had any doubt, Michelle Bachmann doesn't care who she hurts.

Helen was at Michele’s wedding to Marcus Bachmann and got to know him. And Michele got to know Nia, the woman who has been Helen’s partner for almost 25 years.

Helen never had a conversation about her sexual orientation with Michele and knew that Michele’s evangelical Christianity was deeply felt. Still she couldn’t believe it when, about a decade ago, Michele began to use her position as a state senator in Minnesota to call out gays and lesbians as sick and evil and to push for an amendment to the Minnesota constitution that would prohibit same-sex marriage: precisely the kind of amendment that Minnesotans will vote on in a referendum on Election Day.

“It felt so divorced from having known me, from having known somebody who’s gay,” said Helen, a soft-spoken woman with a gentle air. “I was just stunned.”

Helen wrote her stepsister about her shock over the things Bachmann was saying, and the political steps she was taking. Bachmann did not reply.
When Michele spoke at a State Senate hearing in 2006 about her desire for a constitutional amendment against same-sex marriage, Helen showed up...

“I wasn’t looking to make a public statement,” she told me. “I just thought: I’m going to go there and sit there so she has to look at me. So she has to look at Nia. I wanted her to see: this is who you’re doing this to. It’s not some anonymous group of people. It’s not scary people. It’s me. It’s Nia.” She paused, because she’d begun to sob.

Kathleen Parker didn't like Joe Biden's  smile and assumes, because she clearly read no polls, that everyone else hated it too.

George Will has a title that almost makes me think his column could be worth reading. I am not falling for it.

Jules Witcover wonders if last week's debate could be a preview of 2016.

As Biden approaches his 70th birthday in November, one hears talk — certainly not discouraged by him — of a third presidential try in 2016. At 73, he would be one of the oldest Americans to seek his country’s highest office, surpassing Reagan’s 69 in 1980 and equaling Reagan’s age at reelection.
Biden vs. Clinton for the Democratic nod in 2016? That would be a fun match up.

Most people would argue that there should be few limits on free speech, and Daily Kos has long supported the idea that the ability to post anonymously is an important part of maintaining a free flow of ideas online. In my own time on DK, I know that I expressed ideas that might have been costly to myself and my family when posting under a pseudonym, and since deciding to "out" myself, I've also self-censored to a degree that makes me more than a little ashamed. I was braver, on topics that really matter, when I faced less chance of personal consequence. But should there be limits on what you can say anonymously?  Gawker has outed one of the most notorious users of Reddit, a man who many regarded as a friend and mentor, but who also started a group for praising Hitler and another group dedicated to posting images of dead teenage girls. Is there a point where anonymity becomes a weapon?

If you didn't watch last week's Vi Hart video, you missed out. Don't miss this one.

Originally posted to Devil's Tower on Sat Oct 13, 2012 at 07:42 PM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  No literary stylings this week (34+ / 0-)

    I could do mock Faulkner -- 2,000 words of punditry, all one sentence -- but everyone who got it would hate me for it.  And besides, I think a little of that kind of thing goes a long way.

    So expect your punditry served straight up (though perhaps with a small side order of bacon) for at least a few weeks.

  •  This week Vi was all about hexaflexagons, (15+ / 0-)

    as October is hexaflexagon month.

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White -6.00, -5.18

    by zenbassoon on Sat Oct 13, 2012 at 07:52:34 PM PDT

  •  I have a question (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Hillbilly Dem, skohayes, dinotrac, laurnj
    If millionaires were a political party, that party would make up roughly 3 percent of American families,
    Does that mean 3% of American families income is a million dollars or their net worth? I just want to know how poor I should feel.

    How big is your personal carbon footprint?

    by ban nock on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 04:37:32 AM PDT

  •  DeathStar Willard hovering over Ohio.....looking (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes, Amber6541, laurnj

    for targets of opportunity.

  •  with all due respect the history of America (8+ / 0-)

    isn't one of inclusion

    Blacks, the Irish, Mormons (yes a lot of it was brought on by themselves) etc etc.

    The history of America is one of a movement towards inclusion though it's a troubled one and one that often is more then a little rocky.

  •  Mitt and the Rand Poll.....I'm faaaaaaaading. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes
  •  Woo! Back outside the gray zone! (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes, singe, elmo, laurnj, wintergreen8694

    It's nice to see the data points on the RAND panel finally getting back out of the margin of error... :)

    So goddamn quickly too, and this is more than just a day or two of noise. Coupled with all the other polls from yesterday, this is excellent news.

    The intention to vote measure stopped its fall too...Obama trending up, Romney downwards.

    Seems like Biden did manage to fire up our side!

  •  That poll graph narrated: (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes, laurnj, TheChocolateChips

    Romney you can do it, you can do it.... but NAH!

    Biden was smiling at the debate and now we are smiling with him.

    Meanwhile Paul Ryan grabs for another drink.

  •  Chris Hayes Confronting Great Conflict (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    in the current economic scene. Is Staples really a great example of how Romney economics improves economy overall?

  •  Listening to NPR (8+ / 0-)

    piece on last Presidential debate and what to expect of next "debate."  Ari Shapiro on and on and on how strong Romney was -- not one single word about the breathtaking number of lies.

    Scott Whatever Horsely thinks the town hall is not a good forum for Obama ---- ???????

    NPR has become insufferable.  These so called political reporters are useless (and then add in Mara Liasson).

    " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 05:12:22 AM PDT

  •  Nicholas Kristof has a powerful column today (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    elmo, wintergreen8694, laurnj

    which I explore in Nick Kristof offers a personal story of why we need Obamacare

    His column is titled A Possibly Fatal Mistake and it is about his freshman roommate from Harvard, whom he also knew as a high school students, and offers his friend's words as well as his own reactions.

    "We didn't set out to save the world; we set out to wonder how other people are doing and to reflect on how our actions affect other people's hearts." - Pema Chodron

    by teacherken on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 05:16:26 AM PDT

  •  Now NPR story on (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wintergreen8694

    Romney's Cranbrook days -- heavy emphasis on "alleged" hair cut story.  Rest of it is basically a free ad for Cranbrook.  What a crock of shite.  Thanks for the Romney ad, NPR.

    " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 05:17:48 AM PDT

  •  Well Mr. Dworkin promised me this would be (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes

    on the front page if the trend held.....

    The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy;the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness

    by CTMET on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 05:19:31 AM PDT

  •  The piece by Nicholas Carnes (5+ / 0-)

    is depressing. Even when we elect progressives, they're still bound to rich donors who finance their campaigns.
    Consequently, we see the soft treatment of Wall Street, the Republicans bending their knees to the Chamber of Commerce (sponsored by ALEC), and a tax code that consistently favors the wealthy.
    We have to get the money out of politics and limit campaign times (House reps start campaigning to get reelected about 3 months after they take office).

    “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

    by skohayes on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 05:20:16 AM PDT

    •  Exactly (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dinotrac, Amber6541

      The problem is.. You should never put the power to write laws concerning election finances into the hands of those most affected by them!

      But, I'll be darned if I can see any way around that.

      Term limits might help as well.

    •  Limiting campaign times (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      divineorder, skohayes
      We have to get the money out of politics and limit campaign times (House reps start campaigning to get reelected about 3 months after they take office).
      All elected officials go into reelection mode about three minutes after they've been certified the winner of their race.  Whether it is to start new fund raising or "legislate" in prospect of reelection, a new race is envisioned as soon as the old one is completed.  The Presidency is different as once that 2nd term is secured the reelection mode is moot.  This is especially true if the Vice President won't be a candidate for the next term (Cheney is a good example).  Will Vice President Biden run for President in 2016?
  •  I'm not sure the Reddit thing is quite an outing.. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rickthetwinkie, One Opinion

    I felt a bit incensed when I first read about it yesterday. I value anonymity on the Internet as much as anyone, and normally I'd be shocked when even a horrid person's real identity is outed.

    Not so much after I read more.

    The person in question has CHOSEN to become a high-profile figure. He revealed his identity to many people. He was cozy with the Reddit staff, and they knew who he was.

    He was the most influential user there last year. And not by just a little bit:

    #1
    violentacrez Pimp Daddy
    578,014 link karma, 87,663 comment karma

    #2
    syncretic The Squeaky-Clean Porn King
    73,411 link karma, 21,171 comment karma

    I think that's a 1:1 relationship (correct me if I'm wrong), but in that case, that's over 600k upvotes on his posts. (Probably even more than that, since he probably gets a lot of downvotes to be balanced out.) And nearly ten times higher than the person in second place!

    And from the article, he basically functioned as the unpaid "porn police" for Reddit.

    It's a fine (and fuzzy) line, but in this case, I think it's safe to say that this was more of a case of investigative journalism. Not quite an outing.

  •  Tipped for graph alone :) (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happynz

    "Say little; do much." (Pirkei Avot: 1:15)

    by hester on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 05:21:32 AM PDT

  •  Globalization changes this (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    That was an excellent article by Cynthia Freeland. One of the scarier aspects is that the period after WWII that we tend to think of as this baseline or norm may in fact be a rare occurrence, historically. A certain set of circumstances aligned to create a broad middle class, possibly for the first time anywhere, and it may or may not happen again or any time soon.

    One of the differences between then and now is globalization, and in fact this is one of the differences between our current plutocracy and others she's describing throughout history. There were "globalization" effects even for Rome though in the limited sense of the world as they knew it, i.e. there was no globe involved since they knew so little of it, but there are much bigger ones for us.

    So the 1% have both more means, and more incentive, to continue pulling away from the rest of us, partly by creating a global class of aristocrats, centered in places like The City in London. You can't help noticing for example that while we're at least fighting off the Romney-Ryan plans for austerity and enriching the rich, at least for the moment, in the UK they've been ruled by that group for years now and it's already had the predictable results, plunging them back in recession.

  •  Anonymous Reddit users and other people's privacy (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    elmo, missLotus, Amber6541, Angelica Jo, laurnj

    The man who Gawker exposed was a major contributor to Reddit forums fetishizing photos of underage girls taken without consent.  The article and the comments are both fascinating, because ViolentAcrez and his defenders are exposed as hypocrites who care deeply about their own privacy but not at all for the privacy of the people whose pics ended up in "creepshots".

  •  Your "lack of disparity" is a myth.. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fast Pete

    Socio-economic mobility has slowed somewhat in recent decades, but there is still a pretty good chance you have a large number of individuals in the upper economic classes with close roots (2 generations or less) in the lower economic classes.

    It's certainly possible for someone who is wealthy to champion the downtrodden (witness Teddy Kennedy), but in a representative democracy, where we so rightly worry that our government doesn't align with the distribution of race and gender among the public, why are we so willing to accept a government sharply unrepresentative when it comes to class?
    So, first off, it is not as "sharply unrepresentative" as you think.  Many in Congress are only a single generation away from immigrant parents or a poorer class.

    The current resident of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue comes to mind...

    Second, and more importantly, there's a reason higher socio-economic classes strive for political leadership roles. They have achieved, usually, a measure of success in the private sector, eduction or local government, something nearly impossible for someone to do in the lowest economic ranks.

    Would you rather have low educated, non-achievers running your government?  No.  Fortunately, the mobility our society enjoys guarantees us a good number of potential leaders with very strong ties to lower classes.

    And.. that closeness to the roots is the very reason we have a House of Representatives, who I would argue would not consider themselves the "elite".

    •  People like to say that Obama (8+ / 0-)

      is yet another "millionaire". But while it may be technically true that the Obamas had a net worth slightly above $1M when he took office, there is a fundamental problem with lumping such people in with the rich. One million dollars may have made for a Great Gatsby in 1925, but today it isn't that hard for a person who is successful enough to make it to the presidency to accumulate one million. Take two professionals working and saving over a decade, add in a bit of inherited money from middle class parents, and you are practically there. Obama made virtually all of his money by writing two books about his life and his philosophy, neither of which had much to do with the subject of money.

      He is most decidedly not "the rich".

    •  Yes "one percent" and "elite" is very misleading (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Jerry J, laurnj

      Many who made it remain inclusive not extractive and see the economy (and corporations) working best when they do the exact opposite of Ayn Rand. And inovation is a game everyone must be brought in to play.

      Extractive? Billionaires for Romney especially including the Koch brothers and Adelson, and Romney himself with all LBO/PE sharks.

      Inclusive? Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, and quite a few on Wall Street including some hedge fund managers. Plus as you say most democrats in Congress.

      My experience in DC (I had a contract to help bring in the federal departments' rolling planning) is everybody on "our side" is working with only partial models (I'd include the great Paul Krugman in that).

      Liberalism is in slow death because they cant once and for all figure out how to jump the economy onto a better plane. No mere pulling of one or two magic levers is going to do it.  They need to, well, be inclusive more.

    •  A sharp rise in Estate and Inheritance taxes would (6+ / 0-)

      go a long way to insuring upward mobility.  It is time to end affirmative action for lucky spawn.

      Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a Republican. But I repeat myself. Harry Truman

      by ratcityreprobate on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 06:50:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  After the sturm und drang, I am less (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    pessimistic about this election than I was before.

    Conservatives are not necessarily stupid, but most stupid people are conservatives. John Stuart Mill

    by Micheline on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 05:33:29 AM PDT

  •  Media elite (5+ / 0-)

    And let us not forget that in addition to having captured much of the body politic of this nation the views and values of the wealthy elite are also over represented in the mainstream media. It essentially owns its own media apparatus. To me this is the most disturbing aspect of all. Not only does the wealthy elite have the ability to make law, it can convince large swaths of the citizenry that what is being done is in our best interest.

  •   Libyan Ambassador’s Death Not a Political (8+ / 0-)

    Issue,Says Dad;

    The father of Christopher Stevens, the U.S. ambassador to Libya who was killed in the attack in Benghazi last month, said his son’s death shouldn’t be politicized in the presidential campaign.
    “It would really be abhorrent to make this into a campaign issue,” Jan Stevens, 77, said in a telephone interview from his home in Loomis, California, as he prepares for a memorial service for his son next week.

    Mitt Romney, the Republican nominee, has criticized President Barack Obama for not providing adequate security in Libya, saying the administration has left the country exposed to a deadly terrorist attack.

    The ambassador’s father, a lawyer, said politicians should await the findings of a formal investigation before making accusations or judgments.

    “The security matters are being adequately investigated,” Stevens said. “We don’t pretend to be experts in security. It has to be objectively examined. That’s where it belongs. It does not belong in the campaign arena.” Stevens said he has been getting briefings from the State Department on the progress of the investigation.

    So now the mother of one of the murdered security staff and the father of the murdered ambassador have basically told Mittens to stop politicizing the deaths of their children...I wonder if the little rich kid will show some respect for members of the 47% and the 99% and STFU!

    http://www.bloomberg.com/...

    •  It also makes little political sense. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Amber6541, laurnj

      I very much doubt whether this is something that will affect anyone's vote. If RomneyRyan thinks this something they ought to campaign on, then it means they must be getting desperate.

      For if there is a sin against life, it consists perhaps not so much in despairing of life as in hoping for another life and in eluding the implacable grandeur of this life. - Albert Camus

      by Anne Elk on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 07:29:40 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Nate Silver(back) coming up on Hayes' show. (0+ / 0-)
  •  I picture Joe Biden - Deval Patrick (0+ / 0-)

    With the Obama's joining the campaign trail sometime after the DNC in Phoenix, AZ.

    I picture all of them up on stage and former 2-term President Barack Obama still having the ear of the Oval Office extending his legacy to approach FDR's 3 terms.

    And I picture Rush Limbaugh having a myocardial infarction over it.

  •  Your George Will non-link was awesome. LMAO (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Egalitare

    Also linking to the Gawker article was much appreciated. I saw it linked here at DK yesterday as well and appreciate it since Reddit has blocked Gawker.

  •  From the Gawker article: (5+ / 0-)
    Under Reddit logic, outing Violentacrez is worse than anonymously posting creepshots of innocent women, because doing so would undermine Reddit's role as a safe place for people to anonymously post creepshots of innocent women.

    I am OK with that.

    Are you on the Wreck List? Horde on Garrosh.

    by Moody Loner on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 06:48:19 AM PDT

  •  Clinton vs. Biden in 2016? Slowest "race" ever. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541
  •  Biden v Clinton? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541, wintergreen8694

    You've got to be kidding.  Both of them are way too old!  

    We cannot become a party of seniors and let the R party represent itself as the party of youth.  We cannot do it!

    The robb'd that smiles steals something from the thief. -- Shakespeare

    by not2plato on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 06:58:31 AM PDT

    •  Biden would only be 1 year older than McCain (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Amber6541, Lightsource777, laurnj, LSmith

          In 2008, McCain was 72, I think....

           As for RobCat's comment that the race would be lethargically slow, Biden showed a hell of a lot more energy in his debate than Obama showed in his!

           And like it or not, seniors are going to be the largest voting block in America for some time to come...

           And it would be nice to have a Democrat in the White House who can remember what America was like before the New Deal and the Great Society were eviscerated by Reagan and his political descendants, and would seek to restore that legacy.

           I wouldn't mind seeing Biden in the Oval Office, as long as he chooses a younger running mate.  A President Biden along with a dynamic, younger Vice President could give the Democrats a lock on the Presidency for the next 16 years.

           Imagine for example, a Joe Biden / Julian Castro ticket!  They'd even have a shot at Texas' 38 electoral college votes, and with the combined senior and Latino vote, I wouldn't be surprised if they got 55-60% of the popular vote!

  •  Biden v. Clinton, fun??? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder

    They both will be associated with either a losing team or the team that after having been re-elected knifed its most ardent supporters in the back and cut SS & Medicare.

    We can do and must do much better.

  •  If you wanted to deal with the class problem (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    in politics, you could just have a lottery to pick from a pool of people volunteering for the job in each district. To qualify for the pool, you'd have to be over 18, be able to move to DC for 4 years and not have been convicted of a felony in the previous 15 years. I would have to say that this system would generate a better Congress than what we have now and would be massively cheaper, not to mention a lot more fun.

    For if there is a sin against life, it consists perhaps not so much in despairing of life as in hoping for another life and in eluding the implacable grandeur of this life. - Albert Camus

    by Anne Elk on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 07:23:43 AM PDT

    •  Interesting Idea (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Amber6541, Anne Elk, DSPS owl, laurnj

          But if you seek volunteers, you'd get a terrible outcome.  The people who want the job are precisely the people who shouldn't get it.  Too much chance that some power-hungry total nutcase moron wins the lottery, and there's no accountability to the voters.

            On the other hand, if you were to select individuals randomly from a district's entire population, the outcome probably couldn't be worse than the Congress we have now.  If we can trust some random schlub off the street to serve on a jury in a murder trial, why shouldn't we trust the same schlub to be a legislator?

      •  And that would be different from the current (0+ / 0-)

        situation how? You know, jury duty and legislative duty have a lot in common. Maybe you could deal with the inclusion of the odd nut by simple increasing the size of Congress to a couple of thousand. Then you could have a central, permanent staff in the Congress whose job it was to take care of presenting legislation just like prosecutors and defense lawyers. Have a presiding constitutional judge to make sure that all was copacetic and you'd have a pretty decent alternative to the current system. I think we are onto something!

        For if there is a sin against life, it consists perhaps not so much in despairing of life as in hoping for another life and in eluding the implacable grandeur of this life. - Albert Camus

        by Anne Elk on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 07:58:22 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  And there would be a big incentive (0+ / 0-)

      To make certain that everyone was well-educated so fewer ignorant fools would be the lottery winners.

      The GOP is the party of mammon. They mock what Jesus taught.

      by freelunch on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 08:57:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  This country was created for and by the rich; (0+ / 0-)

    There's no surprise that the rich own "our" government. Someone votes for them & their interests.

    This is another reason why I hate rich people & the "framers". They win; we lose.

    The radical Republican party is the party of oppression, fear, loathing and above all more money and power for the people who robbed us.

    by a2nite on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 08:14:04 AM PDT

  •  re: the outing by Gawker (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    laurnj, CS in AZ, guavaboy

    I read the Gawker article and thought it was okay to reveal the identity of the Reddit troll. He's a creep. And whoever brought up Reddit's hypocrisy in banning Gawker is right. Reddit sounds like a virtual dystopian world.

    48forEastAfrica - Donate to Oxfam> "It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness." Edna St.V. Millay

    by slouching on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 08:42:39 AM PDT

    •  Agreed. This story makes me glad I never got (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      guavaboy, LSmith, Minnesota Deb

      into Reddit. A guy who used to work at my company was very into it, and he was always sending me links to articles (or whatever they call them there), and would say I should sign up on Reddit, it's a great discussion site, etc.

      I checked it out but it really didn't interest me so I never did sign up, although I'd sometimes think about it and wonder if I was missing out ... but now I really want nothing to do with that site. Ick.

      I find it disturbing to learn about "creepshots" and that Reddit allows this. I would think it would be illegal. But for them to do that and then whine about their right to privacy... well, as Tweety would say, HAH! I don't think so, you dumb asses.

  •  Say WHAT? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    CS in AZ

    "Biden vs. Clinton for the Democratic nod in 2016? That would be a fun match up."

    Please God, not that again.  One 2008 was enough.  Joe and Hill need to flip a coin.

    •  Yeah, that doesn't sound fun to me either (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Paulie200

      I don't want to see our side tear each other up like that. The former VP and the SOS of Obama's first term going at each other? No thank you!

      I have loved Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State, and I hope she retires from the politics of running for office when she steps down and makes the most of her full status and power as the former SOS, along with Bill as the former president, for a long time to come.

      As for Biden as our next nominee... I don't know. I love him, and he did great in the debate this week, but I think it's far too early to say he's the best choice to carry the torch in 2016. Biden/Warren sounds good to me at the moment, but we'll see. I have to confess I love the idea of Elizabeth Warren as our first woman president.

  •  This economic course (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LSmith

    which has corresponding legal, political and social manifeswtations, all representing the same hegemonic process of power centralizations for the globalized few and austerity and disempowerment for the rest of us is what I mean when I talk about the 21st Century Social Crisis.  One particular that gets lost however, is the biggest key of all.  When capitalism as we know it first rose in the 19th century, it produced in reaction the socialist/working cloass movement that in its various phases and faces imposed the 20th century synthesis of limited business regulation and soft social democracy on the capitalist systems.  However, today, corporate capital has slain the socialist resistance and tossed aside the compromise that was imposed.  Now there is no longer any force, and source, of resistance to the total hegemony of today's globalized capital.  We can point at it all we like  We have no base and no basis for opposition, for resistance, there are no institutions of popul;ar power that are not wholly embedded within the power structure of contemporary capital.  They get wealth beyond the wildest imagination of any generation of humans that ever lived before.  We get precarity and austerity.

    Welcome to the 21st Century Social Crisis.

    (Of course the finger of blame will always first be extended at those few who dare to try to resist even lacking any instituti9onal or social basis to do so.)

    Ever get the feeling you've been cheated?

    by ActivistGuy on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 09:13:43 AM PDT

  •  Gawker Article (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Minnesota Deb

    I read this article yesterday on the outing of Violentacrez and the one thing that sticks in my mind is the concept of "Free Speech" that the posters/moderators of Redit claim is so central to their anonymous website. As one who never used the Internet to troll other than playfully with people I correspond with regularly and who has actively sought to live openly on the Internet shortly after I started using it, I have to say, I think this excuse is a bunch of bullshit.

    If you really want to have free speech, your identity has to be open, IMO. Hiding behind your computer screen and posting trollish/hateful/bullying/degrading comments and pictures isn't what free speech is all about. However, if you really want to defend it that way, then you have to accept the other side of the coin - that the answer to these types of free speech is MORE free speech that peals away your protections. That has been the answer forever. That is the answer to people who claim war hero status when they never served or were at best a cook in Georgia while others were off fighting. You want your "free speech" to use as a weapon, but don't like it when it's used on you.

    Tough shit. You want to defend the right of people to creep on teenage girls, do it above board. Do it where everyone can see your face and name. Do it proudly and change the discussion or expect to face the consequences when the world says "who's the asshole posting pictures of dead girls, making racist comments and defending Hitler?"

    I got zero sympathy for VA. The fact these losers who defend his right to anonymous free speech have no clue what the words actually mean...

    Progress 365 not just a slogan a goal - 300 progressive seats in the House and 65 progressive seats in the Senate.

    by jusjtim35 on Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 09:54:21 AM PDT

  •  MONOPOLY----- THE END GAME (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    guavaboy, Mark Sumner

    you have all been there....

    2 a.m. and Bob has 90% of all MONEY & PROPERTIES

    THAT IS HOW MONOPOLY ENDS....

    If Bob wants the game to continue, he "forgives" you debt, or holds onto the debt.

    ASK YOURSELF.... HOW DO WE CONTINUE THE GAME ? ? ?

    Is this all that diffferent ?

    Redistribute the properties
    Redistribute the money
    Start a new level playing field game
    Leave BOB, just keep circling the board without meaning

    A SMART BOB ONLY WANTS TO OWN 50%, AND THE GAME CAN CONTINUE

    IN A NUTSHELL, THAT IS THE SITUATION WITH MONOPOLY

  •  I was disappointed in this diary. (0+ / 0-)

    The opening paragraph suggested the elites were also laying the seeds of their own destruction but there was very little of that in the diary. In fact, I got the opposite impression.

  •  Granting I am not economists but how can the (0+ / 0-)

    1% who claim to be producers keep making their millions  when there are not purchasers for what they make?

    When the 1% have succeeded in reducing most Americans to poverty level incomes, most Americans won't be in the market for what the 1% need to sell to stay rich.  
    Taco bell will still be going but Dominos will be selling only to about 10% of the population.  Unless they are selling gold plated pizzas at $5K a pop they won't be able to keep their shops open.  

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