I am glad the title caught your eye – because it is true.
No, we are not being held hostage by some terrorist organization – if that were the case the solution would be easy for a Democratic or a Republic administration – we would simply bomb the hell out of them or use drones to kill them five or ten at a time, after all, we have all the money we need to spend on bombs and drones – but little for healthcare, teachers, libraries, firemen or policemen.
It is no secret that our country has a predisposition for war – but believe me, 9/11 was the excuse and not the reason.
I would go one step further, it is not that we have a predisposition for war – we have an obsession with continuous war – and even though the war is technically over in Iraq and the war in Afghanistan appears to winding down – ever so slowly, we will simply invade another country – like Iran or Venezuela or a handful of other countries in northern Africa that have the natural resources that we need – or, at best, resources we want because we are selfishly using them at an alarming rate. In addition, most American’s do not know this but the U.S. has boots on the ground in a dozen or more countries in Africa, the Middle East, and Eastern Asia.
Okay, if the culprit is not some kind of terrorism, what is it or who is it?
Oh, just to be sure, the culprit is not the Occupy Movement or some Green movement or even someone wanting to make wind turbines or solar panels.
The hostage takers are the large multi-national corporations headquartered in the United States – along with the richest of the rich – those Americans who represent, give or take, the top 10 percent richest Americans – some of these richest of the rich are our elected officials in Congress.
Over the past 20 – 30 years these richest of the richest Americans have continued to get richer and richer – even during some bad times like the extended recession we have been experiencing. It is these filthy-rich corporations and ultra-rich Americans who are the root of the problem.
It is not that there are more rich Americans than before, it is that the rich have gotten richer – the gap between the ultra-rich and the middle class has widened exponentially and that gap is continuing to widen – in addition, the middle class is shrinking because of mergers and acquisitions and outsourcing and offshoring.
These huge corporations hate the Obama Administration and they are holding America hostage so the U. S. Presidency will be forced to change hands. The reason being is that these corporations and ultra-rich Americans want a lower corporate tax rate and they also want a lower tax rate on passive income like dividends – the same dividends that Romney receives. Because passive income is Romney’s primary source of income, he has a lower tax rate than the majority of Americans.
President Bush, in one of his first acts as president in 2001, lowered the corporate tax rate and also lowered the tax rate on dividends – but that is not good enough for the rich and for corporate America.
In an effort to force a change in Washington, these corporations are collectively holding America hostage by not hiring, not expanding manufacturing and through mergers and acquisitions and outsourcing and moving production overseas. Because Americans are losing jobs left and right these corporations and the rich are blaming Obama for the high unemployment rate, gas prices, and foreclosures.
These corporations are doing everything possible to stall the recovery we are witnessing. Corporations are pleading to the American public that they need lower taxes and if that happens they will start hiring. These corporations are sitting on well over a trillion dollars – dollars that could be doled out today to hire people in small numbers initially. After the “doling” starts, the unemployment rate will start to wane and people will start buying things again like appliances, carpeting, home improvement items, and normal consumer goods which will translate into more hiring and the recovery will start to happen.
A few months ago I wrote a blog and the crux of that blog was for companies to “hire it forward.” Companies have been sitting on thousands of infrastructure projects – again holding America hostage. All they have to do is loosen up a few purse strings – nothing that would adversely affect their income statements – but enough to slowly boost the economy – in effect, putting a few thousand Americans back to work weekly. Eventually, the snowball effect will take hold and the unemployment rate would decrease exponentially.
Republicans are doing everything to make sure this does not happen before the presidential elections.
This is not much different than what Reagan did when he was running against Carter. Reagan made a deal with the Iranians to delay release of the hostages and that was the reason for Carter’s demise at the poll. Fifteen minutes after Reagan’s inauguration, the hostages were released.
So, exactly what are Republicans now doing? They are passing laws that require voters to show a photo id. Is that important? You bet your bottom dollar that is. Many inner city lower income Americans – White, Hispanic, and Blacks, tend to not have automobiles or driver licenses because they don’t need them. They take busses and trolleys and subways and other public transportation. Because they tend not to travel overseas, they do not have passports. So, without a need for a driver’s license or a passport, most low income Americans, mostly Blacks and Hispanics, they will be disenfranchised from voting this November. So, who loses when minorities are denied at the polling booth? Democratic candidates lose.
Republicans are also doing everything to bust up unions. Reagan did it with the Air Traffic Controllers and that was just the beginning. Now Republicans are trying to bust up auto unions, retail unions, police and fire unions, and government employee unions.
Without unions, Democratic elections get fewer donations to their party candidates, which equates to fewer votes for Democrats. As a result, Republicans will control more state houses and even Congress.
Now Republicans are trying to turn average Americans against government workers – they are saying that these government workers make too much money and they have a very liberal retirement package and great medical plans. In doing this, they are turning Americans against yet another group. They have been turning whites against blacks, blacks against Hispanics, and the middle class against poor Americans. It is an old game – divide and conquer. If you can turn one Democratic group against another, then in effect you have encouraged them to either stay home on Election Day or worse yet, vote Republican.
Turning one socio-economic class against the other is an old trick and it works every time.
There are numerous blog sites that expound on how low-income blacks are causing America to go broke, when in fact it is the corporate elite that are hurting America. There are other blog sites that give us the impression that all Hispanics in America snuck across the Rio Grande and are here illegally. Both of these lies are meant to divide and conquer. On the other hand, large corporations love it that there are illegals in America because they can pay them less, which equates to higher corporate profits.
I would be remiss if I did not say that there are many rich Democrats in Congress who are also perpetuating these lies to middle and low income Americans, however; the bulk of those spreading these malicious lies are people to the extreme right.
There is a misnomer that American corporations are burdened with the highest taxes in the world. Tax rates are tax rates and what really matters is the actual tax amount each companies pay.
Companies have gotten smarter – they hire an army of tax attorneys to figure out ways to pay less taxes – they push the boundaries between the legal and the illegal.
They move money around like two people move pieces in a chess match – by doing that they pay less and less tax – yet gripe that they are paying too much. There are several extremely large companies in America who pay no income taxes – yes, I said “no taxes.”
Just read up on how LITTLE in taxes Apple computer pays. Also check out General Electric. It is disgusting – because for each dollar the wealthiest of the wealthiest avoid paying in taxes, the burden is placed on middle and lower income Americans – and when they cannot fill the gap because so many of them are unemployed, states, counties, and cities cut services like libraries, schools, fire departments, police, parks, and programs for seniors and the poorest Americans.
We gripe because needy families who we don’t even know get $200.00 debit cards that they use to buy groceries – yet no one is raising hell when Apple Computer pays so little in taxes.
I am sure all Americans are proud that Apple is an American company headquartered in California, but does it bother Americans that Apple chooses to have all their products made overseas and that Apple finds the most creative ways to minimize the taxes they pay in the United States?
Warren Buffet, the 2nd richest American has a lower tax rate than his secretary. Did I just say that? Yup!
General Electric paid NOTHING in taxes. Wow, that must be wrong. So why aren’t people protesting in the streets? Simple, because our legislators are doing everything to make us believe there are Americans, (mostly Blacks), in the bottom 20 percent of America, income wise, that are getting a free ride. It is true that a higher percent of Blacks in America are in the lower income category and Republicans are trying to trick average Americans into believing that these blacks are getting federal and state aid left and right and “they” are the reason we are in such an economic crisis. To that, I say a resounding, “B.S.”
Every time someone recommends rolling back the Bush tax cuts of 2001, Republicans “en masse” say that even if we did that, it would not solve our economic problems – at best it would only make a small dent in it.
Why is it that most people who hear Republicans say that simply roll over and say, “let’s leave the tax rate the same – especially if it does NOT solve ALL OF OUR problems.”
If you are the head of your household and your spending is exceeding your income, you look for any and all ways to cut your expenses and you also look for all ways to increase your income. For example, you could take a part-time job making another $150.00 per week and that money could go a long way to balancing your household budged. Even though the $150.00 would not fix ALL your problems, would you simply blow that part-time job off? Hell no. You would jump on that to start the ball rolling.
If Republicans are ONLY looking at spending cuts to fix the budget, just cutting Social Security or just cutting Medicare will not fix our economic woes – but each piece, coupled with tax increases for the rich will get the problem solved.
I dare to say this but if we cut some FAT from our Defense budget, we could surely balance the budget – so, why don’t we trim the DOD budget? They will never trim DOD because that is the sacred cow that allows our military to fight wars that benefit huge corporations like Exxon, Halliburton, and others.
Also, DOD attacks other countries that allow our huge corporations to do business there.
Our military are no longer fighting wars for their fellow Americans – even though they think they are – unbeknownst to them, they are really fighting wars for large corporations – multinational corporations at that. So, why doesn’t our Pentagon start issuing “Exxon combat ribbons” and “Halliburton fossil-fuel ribbons.”
Part of the reason our DOD budge is so high is that our Congressmen allow our civilian contractors to overcharge DOD and also allow these same companies to bill DOD for cost overruns – i.e. bid on a contract at a fairly reasonable price and then halfway through the development effort these same companies are allowed to come up with any excuse possible to raise their contract costs – because we want that new weapon. They, in effect, blackmail us because if we do not approve the contract increase we will not get the finished product.
Americans – Democrats and Republicans alike, need to understand that our DOD budget is extremely high because of the profit incentive and not because we are getting the best weapons systems for the dollar.
I believe there should be a draft and it should require the kids of the richest Americans to serve first and have the draft go down the food chain until we have enough to serve in the military. Why? When these rich kids come home missing limbs and with PTSD and needing long term medical care, their rich parents will be able to pay all the expenses to provide that service. Most rich Americans live in exclusive subdivisions that have wonderful exercise facilities that can be used for rehabilitation and physical fitness for returning rich kids from war.
The time has come to stop all these unnecessary wars, but if our country still feels the need for war, let the hearses bring the caskets home to the richest communities in America – then and only then will they really be paying their fair share to the war effort. The rich are not carrying their weight tax wise and they surely are not carrying it as far as the dead and injured military returning from combat.
Maybe the first five American’s drafted for the next war could be, “the fighting Romney’s boys from Utah.” Then the next two American’s drafted could be, “the fighting Cheney girls from Wyoming.” One of the Cheney girls is a lesbian but that will no longer be a problem for the military any longer.