Billionaire Pete Peterson is holding a by-invitation-only "Fiscal Summit"
Tuesday. This gathering to discuss how to gut entitlement programs and otherwise keep denizens of the top tier from slipping out of the one percentile category is becoming an annual affair. This is No. 3.
I wasn't invited. Chances are you weren't either. And neither was Sen. Bernie Sanders. But that isn't stopping the Vermont independent from showing up to join a little protest rally outside the summit's venue at 1301 Constitution Avenue NW in Washington, D.C. The organizers are informally calling it the "People's Summit." If you're in town and you have a few minutes, you ought to think about dropping in.
At the Campaign for America's Future, Dave Johnson writes:
Deficit theater is coming to DC tomorrow, with a well-funded "fiscal summit." The plot summary is that we have Deficit Trouble — Right Here In River City! so to fix it we need to cut Social Security and Medicare and the things democracy does for We, the People -- while cutting taxes on the rich and their corporations to make us more "business-friendly." (This musical is sometimes billed as "Simpson-Bowles" but it's the same old song.) [...]
What happened under Bush? We cut taxes on the rich and doubled military spending. (And started wars.) And don't forget collapsing the economy, forcing people onto unemployment and food stamps. That is why we have a deficit. We have a deficit because of tax cuts for the rich, huge military budget increases and the consequences of deregulating corporations.
Here are some questions for tomorrow's deficit theater:
• How large was the country’s yearly budget deficit and total debt in the “Eisenhower/Truman” decades when the top tax rate was 90%?
• Today we have an “infrastructure deficit” – the amount needed to repair our country’s roads, bridges, sewers, etc. – of somewhere upwards of $1.6 trillion. Was our infrastructure kept in good repair before the top tax rates were cut?
• Concentration of wealth is long recognized as a threat to democracy, and now we are seeing a low-wage, everything-to-the-top economy with the greatest ever concentration of wealth going to a few at the top. Was the problem of wealth concentration increasing or decreasing before the top tax rates were cut?
• When top rates were high people couldn’t take home vast fortunes in a single year. When it took several years to make a fortune did corporations depend on long-term or short-term thinking? Did the executives of corporations care if the infrastructure and communities their companies depended on were in good shape? Did large corporations fleece customers and exploit employees for quarterly returns as they do now? [...]
How do we fix this? Doesn't it make sense to look at what caused the deficits and fix that? There actually are budget plans that get rid of the deficit without cutting back on the things democracy does for We, the People. Here is a post about one of those budget plans: The People's Budget Balances The Budget — Why Isn't It Part Of These "Deficit" Talks?
Blast from the Past. At Daily Kos on this date in 2004:
This week Howard Dean announced "Dean's Dozen," a dozen (actually 14) candidates that had garnered the official support of his organization, Democracy for America:
Our new organization — Democracy for America — is dedicated to using its resources to support those candidates in their fight to take our country back from the right-wing conservatives who dominate our government. Today, Democracy for America announces the Dean Dozen — twelve diverse candidates that represent the spirit of grassroots democracy. These will be tough races, and not all of the Dean Dozen may win. However, they will all spread the message that to change America progressives must compete.
Well, his dozen is a peculiar list. It's very difficult to discern what strategic considerations Dean and his staff put into their choices, except possibly that these folks are being rewarded for their loyalty to Dean's candidacy. How else to explain Dean's decision to target the resources of his still significant fundraising and activist base to this collection of campaigns ...
Tweet of the Day:
If your church pastor is telling you to sit out the 2012 election, you need to find another church.
— @eclecticbrotha via TweetDeck
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