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Obama’s Puppetmasters


Wonder why the President doesn’t give a damn about his base, the folks who worked to put him in office?Yeah,it is because of Citizens United. Yeah, it’s his personal flaw that he would sell us out to Wall Street and Big Oil, who are behind all the deficit Chicken Little. And Yeah, he is the worst negotiator ever. Of course that is assuming that he ever cared about ordinary Americans at all. And it bears mentioning he has given far less attention to creating jobs than  creating austerity, or anti-jobs. He can’t have it both ways.

So, he offers up massive “deficit reduction” after previously offering up trillions (2.6 trillion to be specific). He knows this will be recessionary, but he doesn’t care. And then there are the cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs). They will affect each and every one of us over time. And they have an escalating effect on other things, such as tax brackets, as ElaineinRoanoke illustrated in her otherwise excellent diary today. Frankly, I do not understand the sanguine reaction expressed in that post.  Here is a more appropriate reaction, imho. The cuts will eventually cause significant harm to most Americans. And the harm ought not to be shrugged off. We should be speaking out, loudly!  We should be organizing! We should be on the mall in Washington. If only we could primary the president…Not that it would matter.

Primaries matter, of course, but even those of us who worked for him and donated something have little power. We have zero actually. 132 people pretty much run our political universe.  As Lawrence Lessig illustrated in his Lesterland TED Talk, the US is Lesterland. The Lesters are the .05 percent (.05 percent, not 5 percent, of Americans). There are 144,000 Lesters in America’s Lesterland. They gave the maximum personal contribution. They could afford thousands. BTW, only .25 percent of Americans give $200 or more to presidential campaigns. Guess who’s never going to do that again?

[Read about the real purse strings below the fold.]

What an idiot I am to have spent money on the Obama campaign, money which I will need later on to pay for FOOD. (Won’t make that mistake again, certainly not for Hillary, whose own husband was poised to privatize Social security until he needed his base to help stave off his impeachers.)

By the time my cohorts are in their eighties, Obama’s plan will cost us about three months of groceries every year from our eighties forward. It will be even more in people’s 90s. It will cost us an escalating amount in the meantime. But the real heavy hitters are the next two groups.

Only .01 percent give $10,000 or more.  And here’re the heaviest of the heavy hitters.  They are the .000042% (that is 132 individuals) who donated 60% of all Super PAC money.   They own America. And they hate the rest of us. Is it any wonder our nation is unraveling a century of progress, more every single day?  

So here we are, our president keeps talking deficit reduction when what we need is jobs. The President knows austerity doesn’t’ work. But he has imposed it anyway. The way he and the Congress are headed, before long the middle class will be a thing of the past. And that will be in part because of how this president has managed the economy on behalf of the .000042%, or 132 people. Count them.  They are calling the shots and democracy doesn’t matter.  

  • KathyinBlacksburg

    that I sincerely value my friend, Elaine; her long and dedicated history on behalf of Democrats; and her excellent contributions to Blue Virginia.  I am just baffled about the low-octane reaction.  

  • KathyinBlacksburg

    facts about the budget proposal. http://www.alternet.org/10-fac

  • We should be means testing, raising the payroll tax cap, and using other measures (e.g., single payer health care) to get health expenditures under control. We should also be RAISING REVENUES, given that we are currently at the LOWEST tax rates since Ike, and given that we simply can’t fund Social Security, Medicare, defense, and ALSO invest in America’s future at current revenue levels. Period, end of story, no matter how loud the corporate tool/useful idiot Teabaggers scream their lies. Finally, under NO circumstances should we be balancing the budget on the backs of poor, working class, and truly middle class seniors. None. Nor should we be engaging in “austerity” – it’s heartless and stupid, simply doesn’t work, guts the future of our country for no good reason.

    Having said all that, I would also point out that there’s a lot of good stuff in President Obama’s budget, and that it’s infinitely better than the Republican/Ryan alternative, which would be utterly disastrous in every way. So…yeah, I’m frustrated with this situation, including with the White House’s strange negotiating strategy (or is it lack of skill?), but just imagine if President Romney was in there with a Republican House and Senate?  Shudderrrrr. And no, that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t fight to improve this budget plan, including making sure the aforementioned seniors are protected in the final bill that comes out of Congress. Until then, there’s a long way to go and a LOT of organizing to do.  

  • ConsDemo

    With all due respect to the other posters here, I applaud the President’s actions.  The chained CPI is a more accurate reflection of the price changes consumers face and it will shave very little off future benefits.  More importantly, we can’t just leave programs for the elderly on autopilot, or we might as well just plan for bankruptcy.  Some on the left, such as Bob Greenstein, are endorsing the change because they fear programs for the elderly will crowd out spending for other things.  

    I also think the author’s criticisms of the President are unfair.  Presidents have very little control over job creation, otherwise the unemployment rate would always be near zero.   However, even if more government spending was the job creation scheme some think it is, there is no way he is going to get a big stimulus through the House of Representatives as it is currently configured.