Archive for oligarchy

The Political Wealth Gaffe … Not That There's ANYthing Wrong With That

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trickle-down

Totally stole the headline from a couple of Melissa Harris-Perry's beautifully written and delivered opening block quips - and all roads do lead to Seinfeld. 


Seinfeld YouTubes composite extraordinare courtesy of our GottaLaff.

We, as a country,  don't seem to know how to talk about wealth any better than we can articulate adult thoughts on sex … or even get on the right side of science as a Nation.

We'd better learn, and fast. Minding the wealth gap, and avoiding the perilous wealth gaffes that politicians of both parties seem to leap into feet first, is a fascinating topic. Apparently there is 'acceptably wealthy' and 'filthy rich', and it's a third rail that needs nimble feet.

One Arugula moment can really pinch.

qE2

This Sunday one could flip from the media wealth of David Gregory and a panel of Right Wing Stars slumming on the Clinton Global Initiative and Meet the Press world stage to the sanity of Melissa Harris-Perry. (First footage is worth viewing, so have a gander below when time allows, Carly Demon Sheep Fiorina and Bubba are amusing sparring partners).


Does anyone remember which decade turned us from a nation of folks that just knew presidents and notables were going to be from the more rarified monied population, to people that mind the Wealth Gap and eagerly pile on any candidate who isn't visibly living from paycheck to paycheck?

Cory Booker attended Stanford, he isn't doing too badly … does he fall out of the 98%er Defense League in future when his age and talent bring the inevitable wealth he will accrue from political celebrity? If he falls, it should be for reasons more to do with the content of his character, rather than the size of his possible maybe future  offshore accounts wallet.

notsure

Are these wealthy, Not That There's Anything Wrong With That, wannabe public servants, fighting for the regular folk they expect to vote for them? THAT is the question I want answered.

Understanding of a culture you either came from or can relate to is critical, and Americans can smell non-authenticity a mile away. Kennedy's wealth was never a deal breaker … is it Tea Party Tomfoolery or something more?

Melissa Harris-Perry even had the balls to note that liberally beloved Elizabeth Warren was rocking a high six-figure salary at Harvard, so it really truly is a sliding scale of relativity.

Mitt Romney, with the massive wealth of the Mormon Church, his aristocratic family and those pesky details like car elevators to haunt him, didn't offer much in the "I want to knock back a Budweiser with 'ya." category of the Pageant.

The 1975 Rockefeller Dole Bird. Common license.

The 1976 Rockefeller-Dole Bird. Common license.

Here are the Meet the Press vids, mentioned above.

 

Robert Todd Lincoln's Vermont estate, Hildene, is just a few miles down the road from our humble home … and his Dad didn't exactly start out with the sterling silver collection that the Hildene docents show off in Manchester today. Just sayin'.

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Friday Links

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Fed Chair REFUSES to Answer Bernie Sanders: Are we a Capitalist Democracy or an Oligarchy?

Al Franken Blasts Net Neutrality Vote, Warning It Could Hand Corporations the Internet

Elizabeth Warren urges passage of student loan bill, blasts FCC net neutrality plan, and trade bill

Harry Reid Sends Republicans Reeling By Proposing a Koch Killing Constitutional Amendment

Students Coast to Coast Write Open Letters about the Effects of Government Surveillance on Academic Life

Cultural Differences: We Use 3D Printers to Build Guns, The Chinese to Build Houses: 3D Printer Built 10 Houses In Just 1 Day – Seeing It In Action Is Mesmerizing

Spitting, Stalking, Rape Threats: How Gun Extremists Target Women

Encrypted Web Traffic Has Surged Since First NSA Links Last Year

Fast Food Protests Spread Overseas

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From the 1953 CIA Overthrow of Democracy in Iran, to the Iraq War, to the Criminal Gulf Catastrophe and Deaths, BP Was There

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Your daily dose of BuzzFlash, via my pal Mark Karlin:

If you were to draw an oily line from the first exploitation of oil in the Middle East by the British in 1901 (they were in the process of converting their then world dominating naval fleet from coal to oil and were in desperate need of it) to the overthrow of the secular democratic leader in Iran, Mohammed Mossadeq, in 1953, to the Iraq War, to the criminal environmental catastrophe in the Gulf, BP would have been there. [...]

It used to be owned by the British Government (remember the navy armada in need of oil). It was named the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company when the CIA teamed up with the British because the Western style Iranian leader Mossadeq wanted to nationalize Britain's 100% owned and run giant oil concession in Iran, and the West would have none of that.  So Eisenhower authorized "Operation Ajax," and the Shah of Iran was placed in power -- ruling with an iron fist and the dreaded SAVAK, all the time fully backed by the U.S. -- leading to the radical theocratic revolution that we still confront today.  All the time BP, which formally adopted its current name in 1954, was there.

BP was there throughout the de facto colonization of the Middle East to provide oil to the West, the British and the U.S. remaining strong partners in keeping any recalcitrant nations in line. Which leads to the Iraq War and why many Americans and Brits were puzzled by Tony Blair's eagerness to go along with Cheney's secret oil committee plan to seize Iraq oil fields and Bush's belief that the war was Biblically justified.  BP is the largest corporation in the UK and the third largest energy company. Do you have any more questions?

BP and its American counterparts are part of the corporate oligarchy that run governments when it comes to energy policy. They don't take orders from sovereign nations; they give them. [...]

In the UK, BP is the power behind 10 Downing Street when it comes to foreign policy, drilling, and all things oil; that is why Tony Blair could not refuse to join the Bush/Cheney (and Rumsfeld) attack on Iraq.Which leads us to the catastrophe in the Gulf. [...]

And the forecast in any shift of power from oil governance to governance by the people is looking bleaker every day.

Please read the whole piece here.

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