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#301748 - 06/18/17 03:57 PM The Hoarding of the American Dream
NW Ponderer Offline
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The Hoarding of the American Dream. While I don't agree with all of the author's conclusions, he makes a valid point about "wealth advantage." Those that has, gets. Unlike him, though, I don't think economics is a zero-sum game.

I am one that has hovered on the edge of the top quintile for most of my career. I'm not rich, but comfortable. I live in the same modest house I've lived in for nearly 30 years (but never missed a payment). I drive low-end cars for 10+ years (but can buy new, for cash). As I've matured, my income has transitioned from wages to fixed-plus-investments. I've retired early, but don't really "scrimp." I provided college for both my children with only a few outstanding loans (although earned that through the GI Bill).

I've always supported higher taxes even when that is to my disadvantage. I "invest" in local public institutions - PBS, NPR, zoos, museums. The ACLU, Human Rights Campaign, Planned Parenthood, UNCF, Red Cross, and my alma maters count on me for modest, but regular, contributions. I was active in PTA and school support activities for my local schools. I buy locally as much as I can.

I don't think I'm an aberation. I think I'm a patriotic American.
_________________________
A well reasoned argument is like a diamond: impervious to corruption and crystal clear - and infinitely rarer.

Here, as elsewhere, people are outraged at what feels like a rigged game -- an economy that won't respond, a democracy that won't listen, and a financial sector that holds all the cards. - Robert Reich

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#301778 - 06/19/17 03:34 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
NW Ponderer Offline
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Carpal Tunnel

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<bumpity-bump-bump>
_________________________
A well reasoned argument is like a diamond: impervious to corruption and crystal clear - and infinitely rarer.

Here, as elsewhere, people are outraged at what feels like a rigged game -- an economy that won't respond, a democracy that won't listen, and a financial sector that holds all the cards. - Robert Reich

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#303045 - 09/08/17 12:43 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
logtroll Offline
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Registered: 04/26/10
Posts: 8911
Loc: New Mexico (not old Mexico)
Public control of money creation
Quote:
The power to create new money is something that the government could feasibly control and administer itself, for the benefit of all. But governments have surrendered their power of seignorage to the private banking system and its investors.

This has far-reaching, negative impact because, as Mellor explains, “It is the private, bank-issued money system that leaves us with a pernicious cycle of debt and growth. Money could encourage socially and ecologically sustainable production and consumption, but only if it ceases to be a creature of the market and is reclaimed as a social and public representation of value.”

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"You can't fix a problem until you understand what the problem is." Logtroll

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#303188 - 09/21/17 12:48 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: logtroll]
logtroll Offline
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Registered: 04/26/10
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Another take on Universal Basic Income:

UBI could fire the imagination
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"You can't fix a problem until you understand what the problem is." Logtroll

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#303198 - 09/22/17 01:49 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: logtroll]
logtroll Offline
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Registered: 04/26/10
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Loc: New Mexico (not old Mexico)
Quote:
So here’s a partisan YouGov poll on whether people think they could survive the apocalypse. Republicans think they’re more likely to survive the apocalypse than other people in their communities. Democrats and independents, less so. What do you guys think?

Rs or Ds more likely to survive the Apocalypse?

I think this indicates the most basic difference between Cons and Libs. Cons think in terms of defending what's theirs from others, Libs think in terms of cooperating to better survive.

Tendencies... not to be taken as a black and white absolute fact.
_________________________
"You can't fix a problem until you understand what the problem is." Logtroll

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#303204 - 09/23/17 03:38 AM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
pondering_it_all Offline
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But I thought Apocalypse includes Rapture. Why would all those Conservatives even care what happens on Earth once they are taken up by Jesus into heaven. Or do they not really believe they will be included? Christianity kind sucks if you know you will not be saved. Might as well be a hedonist, smoke pot, and go to orgies.

But I can tell you, with all the Conservatives up in heaven, us Liberals are all going to have a great time down here on Earth. We'll make the US a Democratic-Socialist paradise: Health care for all, be as gay as you want, legal pot, free abortion on demand (send those babies directly to heaven), Queer Jewish Woman for President, etc.

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#303286 - 10/02/17 11:33 AM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
logtroll Offline
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_________________________
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#303293 - 10/02/17 06:59 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
NW Ponderer Offline
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The central quote:
Quote:
Adam Smith, the father of modern capitalism, envisioned financial services (and I stress the word “service”) as an industry that didn’t exist as an end in itself, but rather as a helpmeet to other types of business. Yet lending to Main Street is now a minority of what the largest banks in the country do. In the 1970s, most of their financial flows, which of course come directly from our savings, would have been funneled into new business investment. Today, only about 15 percent of the money coming out of the largest financial institutions goes to that purpose. The rest exists in a closed loop of trading; institutions facilitate and engage in the buying and selling of stocks, bonds, real estate and other assets that mainly enriches the 20 percent of the population that owns 80 percent of that asset base. This doesn’t help growth, but it does fuel the wealth gap.
_________________________
A well reasoned argument is like a diamond: impervious to corruption and crystal clear - and infinitely rarer.

Here, as elsewhere, people are outraged at what feels like a rigged game -- an economy that won't respond, a democracy that won't listen, and a financial sector that holds all the cards. - Robert Reich

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#303304 - 10/02/17 11:54 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
pondering_it_all Offline
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Registered: 02/27/06
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I just heard a funny story on PBS radio: Republicans want to "unleash the economy" by cutting taxes of business and the rich, but this kind of move will drive up prices and wages, spurring inflation.

Yellen and the Fed have been doing their best to keep inflation down and say the economy is doing pretty well. So Republican fiscal policy is fighting Fed policy!

The truly ironic thing about this is that people with dollars (IE. the rich) HATE inflation because it drains the value out of their assets over time. The rich should support Yellen and disavow Republican plans to fiddle with taxes to increase inflation. The poor and working class (with fixed rate mortgages) should love this plan because it makes their mortgages smaller in terms of their income.

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#303326 - 10/03/17 05:47 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
NW Ponderer Offline
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Carpal Tunnel

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Big banks and investment "advisors" (i.e. finance industry) LOVE inflation. They thrive on "churn" - the rapid turnover of assets - because they make their inordinate money on transactions, not holding assets. Inflation increases turnover, hence their bottom line. That's why they're promoting Kevin Warsh as Yellen's replacement as Fed chair. It would not be good for Trump, though, so if be skeptical (since the bulk of Trump's money comes from borrowing).
_________________________
A well reasoned argument is like a diamond: impervious to corruption and crystal clear - and infinitely rarer.

Here, as elsewhere, people are outraged at what feels like a rigged game -- an economy that won't respond, a democracy that won't listen, and a financial sector that holds all the cards. - Robert Reich

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#303485 - 10/17/17 01:14 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
logtroll Offline
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Registered: 04/26/10
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Interesting extension of the Universal Basic Income concept to Universal Basic Assets.
_________________________
"You can't fix a problem until you understand what the problem is." Logtroll

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#303491 - 10/17/17 05:10 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
NW Ponderer Offline
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Posts: 16363
I think this is an excellent concept. In the future we need to find a way to have all Americans share in the economic prosperity of the nation. The article points out the problem we face, and it includes the poor state of education in the country.
_________________________
A well reasoned argument is like a diamond: impervious to corruption and crystal clear - and infinitely rarer.

Here, as elsewhere, people are outraged at what feels like a rigged game -- an economy that won't respond, a democracy that won't listen, and a financial sector that holds all the cards. - Robert Reich

Top
#305984 - 03/14/18 03:45 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
NW Ponderer Offline
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Registered: 09/09/11
Posts: 16363
Here's how much you need to earn to be part of the 1 percent - CNBC. In contrast, poverty guidelines. I got on this topic because I i helped my son with his taxes last night. He has a $15.00/ hour job for less than 40 hours a week. He's at the 31st percentile. What Percent are you? - WSJ. That shocked me. 31 percent of the US population earns less than $25,000 a year?! That's the poverty line for a family of 3. One third of the nation? We're worse off than I thought.

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#305988 - 03/14/18 08:10 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
chunkstyle Offline
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Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1157
Yeah, I was really looking forward to one of them ladders of opportunity.
So far as I can tell the last great lift of progress in this country stalled out with the death of FDR and his "Economic Bill Of Rights' and the long slow sidelining of the progressive left since then. Perhaps revived for a bit with star crossed LBJ (A big FDR fan I believe).

Boomers really gave the show away with their voting preferences since 1980 and the election of Reagan. A long slow grind downward sold as freedom by a group of pimps, grifters and real estate whores selling snake oil to mostly white middle age men and their wives all to eager to be lied to.

Wasn't it LBJ who said something about being able to get poor white mens vote by telling them their better than a black man. They'll empty their pockets to hear you say it...

Something like that.


Edited by chunkstyle (03/14/18 08:11 PM)

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#305989 - 03/14/18 09:35 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: chunkstyle]
Jeffery J. Haas Online   sick


Pooh-Bah

Registered: 08/03/04
Posts: 13404
Loc: Whittier, California
Originally Posted By: chunkstyle

Boomers really gave the show away with their voting preferences since 1980 and the election of Reagan. A long slow grind downward sold as freedom by a group of pimps, grifters and real estate whores selling snake oil to mostly white middle age men and their wives all to eager to be lied to.


WORD.
_________________________
"The Left ones think I'm Right, the Right ones think I'm wrong."
Leon Russell - Magic Mirror"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-H1iQ5Y6Eg

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#306005 - 03/15/18 12:57 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
chunkstyle Offline
member

Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1157
The rise of the precariot class is no joke. Welcome to the gig economy NWP. All work and no play makes johnny an angry populist. There's them that has it. Really really has it. Them that think they do until the next bubble bursts, and thems that knows they will never have it. That last group's getting larger and larger all the time and they got nothing to lose. I'm guessing a hard right or a hard left turn is on the horizon.
The new social classes defined


Edited by chunkstyle (03/15/18 01:16 PM)

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#306008 - 03/15/18 08:04 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
chunkstyle Offline
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Registered: 10/02/07
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#306018 - 03/16/18 04:57 AM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: chunkstyle]
Jeffery J. Haas Online   sick


Pooh-Bah

Registered: 08/03/04
Posts: 13404
Loc: Whittier, California
Originally Posted By: chunkstyle


That's why I keep insisting that Sanders is simply an FDR New Deal liberal Democrat, not some kind of "socialist'...no matter how strenuously he insists that he is.

I still think that Bernie has some kind of nostalgic and romantic or sentimental attachment to the label, but not much more than that.
_________________________
"The Left ones think I'm Right, the Right ones think I'm wrong."
Leon Russell - Magic Mirror"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-H1iQ5Y6Eg

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#306022 - 03/16/18 01:25 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
chunkstyle Offline
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Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1157
"solutions to economic inequality need to address more equal access to primary assets that generate better economic and social outcomes."

So is it fair to say that we refined the "workers need to control the means of production"?
Dunno Logtroll. I like these ideas better than the UBI idea. A fear of the UBI is that it could stall out there, in what would be a sweet spot for the libertarian grift. It could serve to further undermine what's left of the public space created before the boomer dismantling and voucherise the last of public government. A society further reduced and organized around goods and services to be boughten instead of garunteed thru collective agreement. I do like and agree with the concept of a universal basic asset and would rather see the conversation move directly to that and avoid the UBI voucher trap.
I think that's a modern analog to FDR's proposal. Sadly he had run out of time to try and institute this reform idea and a more receptive populace to accept those ideas. The current dominating cohort of voters in power are white boomers. I don't think these ideas will find much traction within that demographic. I could see the younger generation that's getting screwed resonate with them though.


Edited by chunkstyle (03/16/18 01:29 PM)

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#306023 - 03/16/18 01:54 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: chunkstyle]
logtroll Offline
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Registered: 04/26/10
Posts: 8911
Loc: New Mexico (not old Mexico)
It could be that we need to dig really deep and identify the "genetic" cultural influences beneath American attitudes and behavior. Thinking about how American culture compares to, say, European culture, we still seem to be motivated at the root level by greed, expansionism, and competition, perhaps remaining from the white people's settlement of the U.S., and not by accepting that we need to live and work together.

"I gotta get mine while the gettin's good." That psychology does not integrate well with a culture of working together for mutual benefit - in fact, it is a corrupting influence on more socialist strategies. As you pointed out, the UBI is likely to be corrupted by "libertarian grift". However, pushing for a UBI or other "socialist" action may move the culture a little bit in the right direction, even if it's not completely successful.

If that is the basic problem, a cultural psychopathy of greed and grabbing, then what is the solution? How do we change a culture that is so deeply embedded that it is blasphemy to even discuss it? I don't think there is a step by step solution, it's just got to be eroded over a long period of time, probably with moments of lurching forward on the momentum of one disaster or another (Great Depression, peak oil, climate change, school shootings, etc.)

Not very happy and optimistic, I'll admit. But, you can't solve a problem until you understand what the problem is...
_________________________
"You can't fix a problem until you understand what the problem is." Logtroll

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#306028 - 03/16/18 08:59 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
pondering_it_all Offline
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Registered: 02/27/06
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No way to get there from here. You need something as bad as the Great Depression to get FDR's social programs. Maybe on a lunar colony?

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#306029 - 03/16/18 10:04 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: pondering_it_all]
Greger Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/24/06
Posts: 14410
Loc: Florida
Quote:
You need something as bad as the Great Depression to get FDR's social programs.

Donald Trump is going to deliver that to us on a gilded platter.
_________________________
"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."— Oscar Wilde

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#306032 - 03/17/18 01:50 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: logtroll]
chunkstyle Offline
member

Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1157
Originally Posted By: logtroll
It could be that we need to dig really deep and identify the "genetic" cultural influences beneath American attitudes and behavior.

If that is the basic problem, a cultural psychopathy of greed and grabbing, then what is the solution? How do we change a culture that is so deeply embedded that it is blasphemy to even discuss it? I don't think there is a step by step solution, it's just got to be eroded over a long period of time, probably with moments of lurching forward on the momentum of one disaster or another (Great Depression, peak oil, climate change, school shootings, etc.)

Not very happy and optimistic, I'll admit. But, you can't solve a problem until you understand what the problem is...


The genetic cultural question is a good one. I think homosapiens are predisposed to behaviors that proved helpful over the last hundred thousand years. Self organizing and ability to co-operate on a large scale are a biggie despite what libertarians and crack pot Ayn Randians would believe.
I remember reading in Mark Twains autobiography that a great change came over the country as a result of the California gold rush.the overall tone became open greed and get rich quick. It's an american thing.
Then there's the big transformation that happened during WW11 and the cultural changes that resulted. The guiding hand thru much of this were the Roosevelt's of course. I believe that Franklin and Eleanor could foresee the coming unleashed forces after war time and the threats they would pose, yet again, on ordinary Americans and our form of government. Hence his Economic Bill of Fights.
Sadly this did not happen and the war effort gave birth to peace time consumerism.
That seems to be the guiding organizing principle to our culture more so than the 'enlightenment trinity' of liberty, equality, and fraternity referenced in earlier linked WEF precariat article.
All of this is one of choice but there are vested interested in the status quo that have successfully limited those choices thru propaganda, tribalism, fraud aind fear to keep the system going.
The boomers were constantly flattered by the media landscape for decades and the status quo was maintained. Gen X's have been mostly ignored as they represent less voting and economic power. The millenials on the other hand seem to have a pretty good grasp of the challenges they face and the environment that they have been given is much different than previous generations. The end of organized human life is very much part of the scenery for them and they have the challenge of trying to make changes to avoid that future while getting resistance from the status quo. The gun protest comes to mind. They recognize this is their fight and so will be many more. Luckily they have the votes to make that change possible. Hopefully, they will be able to avoid the cultural traps of tribalism, consumerism and selfishness that has marked the generations ahead of it.


Edited by chunkstyle (03/17/18 03:48 PM)

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#306051 - 03/17/18 11:57 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
pondering_it_all Offline
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Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 8061
Loc: North San Diego County
I find it interesting that there is lower gun ownership in America, but gun owners typically own more guns. If this trend continues, guns will become more and more concentrated in fewer hands, until the vast majority can make them illegal or highly restricted. Gun nuts make a lot of noise, but the NRA only claims about 5 million members. In a population of 325 million, 5 million is a tiny minority when it comes down to voting. We could vote tomorrow to allow no private holding of guns, making them temporary armory check-outs for ranchers who need to kill something, or to allow just one single-shot shotgun for home protection. With advances in technology, we could even say only guns that work at home are allowed.

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#306052 - 03/18/18 12:36 AM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: pondering_it_all]
Ken Condon Offline
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Registered: 06/14/07
Posts: 3832
Loc: Eugene, OR
But, but, they (the true US patriots) have these assorted popguns in order to fight off and protect themselves from the corrupt and dangerous Federal Government that wants to inter all of us into FEMA and other assorted concentration camps. With these popguns they will be able to fend off the entire US Armed Forces and all of their following list of weapons, intelligence, and technologies:

Uhh--check the internet. The list is entirely too long to insert here.

But with their long and short guns they shall protect us all from a tyrannical federal government hell bend on destroying us and “our freedoms”. Actually-- they likely don’t give a chit about “us”.

Just them.
_________________________
Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.

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#306054 - 03/18/18 08:38 AM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
pondering_it_all Offline
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Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 8061
Loc: North San Diego County
Actually, the prospect of all those gun nuts deciding they want to shoot it out with the US government fills me with glee! Armored personnel carriers could just drive down the streets and pop one mortar round into each nut's home and be on it's way to the next address. It's their choice: If they want to die, so be it.

The next morning we would be free of these aholes, and could create sensible gun policies. Guns do nothing to protect our freedom.

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#306057 - 03/18/18 06:39 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: pondering_it_all]
Greger Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/24/06
Posts: 14410
Loc: Florida
You folks got it all wrong. The US Military will side with the gun nuts, refusing to engage them, turning on their commanding officers and supporting the insurrection. This is the entire purpose of the 2nd amendment.
_________________________
"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."— Oscar Wilde

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#306073 - 03/21/18 01:00 AM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
pondering_it_all Offline
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Registered: 02/27/06
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The gun nuts would like to think that, anyway.

The conditioning you get to follow orders and not think is very difficult to overcome. Enlisted troops care the most about their fellow soldiers. They don't give a f&%k about some civilian domestic terrorists. There is not a big white-supremacist population in the army. They have been integrated for so long, the KKKers that join get kicked out quickly. A lot of DIs are black and they root that shite out.

Have you ever noticed that most alt-right types seem to be about 100 lbs overweight?

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#306079 - 03/21/18 11:56 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: NW Ponderer]
chunkstyle Offline
member

Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1157
Sanders held another town hall Monday night addressing this very issue . Very informative and important work he's doing. Alas, he won't bend the knee to the corporatist Dems and pledge allegiance to their party.

A good synopsis


Edited by Jeffery J. Haas (03/22/18 12:27 AM)
Edit Reason: FIXED URL

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#306081 - 03/22/18 12:26 AM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: chunkstyle]
Jeffery J. Haas Online   sick


Pooh-Bah

Registered: 08/03/04
Posts: 13404
Loc: Whittier, California
Originally Posted By: chunkstyle
Sanders held another town hall Monday night addressing this very issue . Very informative and important work he's doing. Alas, he won't bend the knee to the corporatist Dems and pledge allegiance to their party.

[url=inthesetimes.com/article/21002/bernie-sanders-inequality-town-hall-left-economic-debate]A good synopsis[/url]


WRT to "pledging allegiance", he was SUPPOSED to join and become the broom that made the clean sweep!! tonbricks mad
_________________________
"The Left ones think I'm Right, the Right ones think I'm wrong."
Leon Russell - Magic Mirror"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-H1iQ5Y6Eg

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#306082 - 03/22/18 02:28 AM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: Greger]
Ken Condon Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 06/14/07
Posts: 3832
Loc: Eugene, OR
Unfortunately I think this misguided feller named Greger has it right. I have long wonderned if and when push came to shove if US armed soldiers would defend “us” against “them".

I hope we will never go there.
_________________________
Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.

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#306087 - 03/22/18 03:34 PM Re: The Hoarding of the American Dream [Re: Jeffery J. Haas]
chunkstyle Offline
member

Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1157
Originally Posted By: Jeffery J. Haas
Originally Posted By: chunkstyle
Sanders held another town hall Monday night addressing this very issue . Very informative and important work he's doing. Alas, he won't bend the knee to the corporatist Dems and pledge allegiance to their party.

[url=inthesetimes.com/article/21002/bernie-sanders-inequality-town-hall-left-economic-debate]A good synopsis[/url]


WRT to "pledging allegiance", he was SUPPOSED to join and become the broom that made the clean sweep!! tonbricks mad

With Democrats like this, who needs democrats?


Edited by chunkstyle (03/22/18 03:39 PM)

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