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Posts Tagged ‘corruption’

When you vote November 6th for the Republican or Democratic Party candidates for the US House of Representatives and the US Senate, with few exceptions, you will be voting to increase income and wealth inequality in the United States and the world.

Below are some of the recent statistics on income and wealth inequality from Inequality.com. Wealth are the things that you own, such as homes, cars, stocks, bonds, businesses, etc…. Income is money you have coming in, such as unearned income like dividends and capital gains; while earned income is derived by actually doing something productive, like working at a job or starting and operating a business. Entrepreneurial folks are different from corporate folks inasmuch as the folks who manage corporations are often employees without clues as to how to make the businesses operate efficiently.

I should point out that control of the government via ownership of both major political parties has brought about an unceasing increase in wealth and income inequality in the USA and throughout the world. In other words, political corruption and corruption of the all major corporate news networks have been used to bring about unprecedented income and wealth inequality in the United States and the rest of the world.

Below are some of the most recent findings.

1. Three dynastic wealth families—the Waltons, the Kochs, and the Mars—have seen their wealth increase nearly 6,000 percent since 1982. Meanwhile, median household wealth over the same period went down by 3 percent. Notice they all inherited great wealth. Note that the rich have used their political power to redistribute income and wealth from the 99 percent to themselves.

2. These three wealth dynasties own a combined fortune of $348.7 billion. That’s more than four million times the median wealth of U.S. families. The dynastic wealth of the Walton family grew from $690 million in 1982 (or $1.81 billion in 2018 dollars) to $169.7 billion in 2018, a mind-numbing increase of 9,257 percent.

3. Three individuals—Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, and Warren Buffett—still own more wealth than the bottom half of the country combined.

4. A third of the members of the Forbes 400 own fortunes derived from companies that were founded by earlier generations.

5. The 15 wealthiest multi-generational dynastic families on the Forbes 400 own a combined $618 billion. Their parents or other ancestors founded all of the companies from which their wealth is derived.

6. The Forbes 400 combined own $2.89 trillion dollars, more than the combined wealth of the bottom 64 percent of the United States. It’s also more than the GDP of Britain, the 5th-largest economy in the world. Just 45 individuals own half of this wealth.

7. The median family in the United States owns just over $80,000 in household wealth. The richest person in the United States (and the world), Jeff Bezos, has accumulated a fortune nearly 2 million times that amount.

8. The Bezos fortune expanded by $78.5 billion just in the last year to $160 billion. Even at the recently increased wage of $15/hour, a full-time Amazon worker would need to toil for 2.5 million years to generate this much money.

And so it goes. The entire Republican Party leadership has been bought by the billionaires as well as the entire Democratic Party leadership. In other words, the battle between the Democrats and the Republicans is a battle between billionaires. A few relatively honest major politicians remain in the Democratic Party, but they are not in leadership positions. Think Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Jeff Merkley, and a few others.

Think Elizabeth Warren for president in 2020.

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It looks as though progressive, anti-Wall Street, pro main street, US Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts is getting ready to make a run to become the next United States president. She has always been the champion of the 99 percent and the scourge of Wall Street criminals.

Warren recently took a DNA test showing she has a small percentage of native American running in her bloodstream. For years President Trump mocked Warren’s claim “that family lore says I have Cherokee blood in me.” Trump, true to his immaturity, has always ridiculed her by calling her Pocahontas. This suggests the president and his billionaire backers are terrified of her, and the polls show why he should be scared of her.

During the presidential primaries in 2016, Trump was the only man standing in the Republican field, while Bernie Sanders was still running hard against eventual nominee and Wall Street favorite Hilliary Rodham Clinton. Polls showed Clinton consistently beating Trump by 5 to 10 points at the time, Meanwhile, polls showed progressive candidate Sanders wiping out Trump by 10 to 20 points.

This suggests a significant number of Republican voters would have preferred Sanders over Trump.

In the actual election, Clinton beat Trump by four million votes but lost the electoral college and the presidency. Warren would likely defeat Trump by a greater amount than Wall Street Hillary.

Trump’s popularity is running at 41 percent. Warren, assuming she develops name recognition and a funding machine as Sanders did, would likely wipe Trump out.

However, getting out of the primaries will be tough for Warren. For starters, the Wall Street billionaires who control the Democratic Party, and in particular its leadership; the Democratic National Committee (DNC), would do just about anything to stop a progressive candidate such as Warren, Bernie Sanders or Oregon’s US Senator Jeff Merkley from ever winning the Democratic primary. Wall Street billionaires are terrified of Warren because she actually wants to put an end to business as usual, which is largely based on corruption.

Should Warren win the Democratic presidential primary in 2020, her most bitter foes will be Trump, the Republican Party, the DNC, the Koch brothers, and almost every living billionaire, and perhaps every living billionaire.

Not since President Franklin Delano Roosevelt will the forces of corruption be so united against one candidate. Want proof? The reliably DNC ally Huffington Post has run stories two days in a row denigrating Warren releasing her DNA test results. The last thing the billionaires want is a high visibility presidential candidate talking about bread and butter issues such as forty years of stagnant wages, massive income and wealth inequality, as well as political corruption, Supreme court corruption, and Wall Street corruption.

The attacks on Warren will come from all sides. The big boys are utterly terrified of her. This is precisely why both the Huffington Post, the New York Times and CNN, bastions of the DNC and its billionaire backers, have viciously attacked Warren for her DNA test. Let the battle begin.

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Now that Right Wing Political Hack and Noted Perjurer Brett Kavanaugh is a US Supreme Court Justice, politicians, such as Republican US Senator from Alaska Lisa Murkowski, worry that the Supreme Court will lack credibility for impartiality when making decisions on cases. She need not worry.

The corporate wing of the US Supreme Court has been extremely partial toward Republican billionaires whenever their interests happen to be the case in front of them, so much so that one might rightly suspect the five judges are on the payroll of the billionaires or expect to receive some payback once they leave the court.

Perjurer Brett Kavanaugh now joins Perjurer Chief Justice John Roberts in ensuring the rollback of labor rights, voting rights, civil rights, environmental regulations, health and safety regulations, consumer protections against Wall Street investment banks and other large corporations, and anything else that might impede the growth of billionaire profits.

These corporate plutocrats (John Roberts, Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch, Clarence Thomas, and now Brett Kavanaugh) have raped and plundered the US Constitution with lies in order to ensure the billionaires who control the Republican Party are granted greater political and economic power at the expense of everybody else.

No better example exists than Chief Perjurer John Roberts. When referring to Roe vs. Wade during his Supreme Court confirmation hearings Roberts said, “There is nothing in my personal view…that would prevent me from applying precedents under stare decisis,” which is the legal principle of determining points in litigation according to precedent. Roberts also said, “I do think that it is a jolt to the legal system when you overrule a precedent. Precedent plays an important role in promoting stability and evenhandedness.” Roberts also testified he would act as an “honest umpire” when making decisions. It turns out all of these were lies. The so-called honest umpire threw evenhandedness and legal precedents out the window years ago.

In Citizens United vs the FCC, Roberts and the rest of the corporate wing of the court wiped out 100 years of legal precedent that allowed regulation of campaign finances. Conservative backers of Citizens United lost in lower courts repeatedly but always appealed, knowing that the conservative wing of the US Supreme Court would side with them. The same process occurred with Janus vs AFSCMC. Conservative supporters of Janus lost time and again in the lower courts, but knew, as did their liberal opponents, that once the case reached the Supreme Court it was a done deal. Forty years of legal precedents were eliminated by Robert’s utterly corrupt billionaire court.

Repeatedly, the Roberts corporate/billionaire court has rolled back voting rights, labor rights, campaign finance laws, all to the benefit of their billionaire backers and against the interests of the 99 percent, while eliminating legal precedents in the process.

Now we have Brett Kavanaugh on the court, a Republican political hack and even more notorious perjurer on the court than is Roberts.

How has the corporate wing of the court been able to do this? They have made up fables, things like corporations are people, international trade treaties are not international trade agreements, money is free speech, etc…. They have simply lied about all this stuff and used this make-believe to advance the Constitutional rights of the billionaires and their corporations while simultaneously pushing back the rights of the 99 percent, which would have stunned our founding fathers.

So do not believe it when you read about how Kavanaugh will change the court into a political hack organization. It has been for a long time already. It may be the most politicized branch of government, but one whose decisions are law, even if total corruption is behind these laws. We may need to begin ignoring Supreme Court rulings since corruption is the primary factor determining cases.

You will not be able to find a greater political hive of villainy and corruption than the corporate wing of the United States Supreme Court, which is nothing more than an arm of the billionaire controlled Republican Party.

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Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has proposed legislation in which United States presidential and vice presidential candidates must legally disclose eight years worth of tax returns and place any assets that could present a conflict of interest into a blind trust to be sold off (neither of which President Donald Trump has done). Warren’s bill is part of new legislation she’s introducing to reduce the power and influence of big corporations and banks. Last week, Warren introduced the Accountable Capitalism Act, which would require corporations to be more accountable to their workers, communities, and less accountable to shareholders.

To Warren, the Trump administration’s nepotism is emblematic of everything that is wrong with Washington. But she doesn’t just want to replace Trump and his administration with better actors; she wants to blow up the existing system and start from scratch.

“Let’s face it,” Warren said. “There’s no real question that the Trump era has given us the most nakedly corrupt leadership this nation has seen in our lifetimes,” Warren said to an audience at the National Press Club. “But they are not the cause of the rot — they’re just the biggest, stinkiest example of it. Corruption is a form of public cancer, and Washington’s got it bad.”


Then again, think about what Warren is not saying. Both major political parties are corrupt to the bone. Big money owns the important politicians of both major political parties. The politicians of these two parties and their billionaire owners are what has corrupted our federal, state and local governments, as well as the corporate wing of the United States Supreme Court. Quite naturally, Warren is a member of the Democratic Party and understandably does not want to offend the billionaire-controlled leadership.

Warren wants a federal government in which the US president, vice president, Cabinet members, and congressional lawmakers have a lifetime ban on becoming lobbyists, and other federal workers have restrictions — albeit less severe — on entering lobbying firms. The act would also bar federal judges from owning individual stocks or accepting gifts or payments that could potentially influence the outcome of their rulings. Conservatives Supreme Court members, such as Clarence Thomas and the laste Antonin Scalia are perfect examples of court justices ruling on issues in which they have a vested interest.

And in Warren’s plan — laid out in a new bill called the Anti-Corruption and Public Integrity Act — this would all be overseen by a new US Office of Public Integrity, which would go after violators and usher in a new era of ethics law enforcement.

As expected, the Republican Party, the Koch Brothers controlled Tea Party, and the Wall Street controlled Democratic National Committee will oppose Warren’s proposed legislation.

Billionaires, Wall Street, Big Oil and other major vested interests have rigged politics for decades in their favor, and at the expense of the 99 percent. They will fight to the death to maintain the current corrupt system.
The idea is to “isolate and quarantine the ability of big money to infect the decisions made every day by every branch of our government,” Warren said in a speech on Tuesday. That means all three branches: executive, legislative, and judicial.

“Inside Washington, some of these proposals will be very unpopular, even with some of my friends,” she said. “Outside Washington, I expect that most people will see these ideas as no-brainers and be shocked they’re not already the law.”

Warren, one of the top potential 2020 presidential candidates who is staking out an early position for herself as a voice of working people, is laying out exactly how she would drain the swamp — in detail. She’s long railed against corruption in Washington, but she’s clearly setting herself up as the anti-Trump, proposing drastic reforms to prove it.

The Anti-Corruption and Public Integrity Act is a wide-ranging bill that focuses on getting money and lobbying out of politics in all three branches: executive, legislative, and judicial. Here are the key parts:
• A lifetime ban on lobbying for presidents, vice presidents, members of Congress, federal judges, and Cabinet secretaries.
• Multi-year lobbying bans for federal employees (both Congressional staffers and employees of federal agencies). The span of time would be least two years, and six years for corporate lobbyists.
• Requiring the president and vice president to place assets that could present a conflict of interest — including real estate — in a blind trust and sell them off.
• Requiring the IRS to release eight years’ worth of tax returns for all presidential and vice presidential candidates, as well as requiring them to release tax returns during each year in office. The IRS would also have to release two years’ worth of tax returns for members of Congress, and require them to release tax returns for each lawmaker’s year in office.
• Banning members of Congress, Cabinet secretaries, federal judges, White House staff, senior congressional staff, and other officials from owning individual stocks while in office.
• Changing the rulemaking process of federal agencies to severely restrict the ability of corporations or industry to delay or influence rulemaking.
• Creating a new independent US Office of Public Integrity, which would enforce the nation’s ethics laws, and investigate any potential violations. The office would also try to strengthen open records laws, making records more easily accessible to the public and the press.

“Yes,” Warren said, “public servants should be able to use their expertise when they leave government,” she said. “But we’ve gone way past expertise and are headed directly into graft. Padlock the revolving door.”

Warren wants to create an Office of United States Corporations inside the Department of Commerce and require any corporation with revenue over $1 billion — only a few thousand companies, but a large share of overall employment and economic activity — to obtain a federal charter of corporate citizenship.

The charter tells company directors to consider the interests of all relevant stakeholders — shareholders, but also customers, employees, and the communities in which the company operates — when making decisions. That could concretely shift the outcome of some shareholder lawsuits but is aimed more broadly at shifting American business culture out of its current shareholders-first framework and back toward something more like the broad ethic of social responsibility that took hold during WWII and continued for several decades.

More concretely, United States Corporations would be required to allow their workers to elect 40 percent of the membership of their board of directors.
In this Warren is wrong. 50 percent of the board members should be workers, like in Germany.

Taken together, the Accountable Capitalism Act and the Anti-Corruption and Public Integrity Act are a return to Warren’s bread-and-butter issues, ones that she’s been hammering home since she was a Harvard Law School professor who helped establish the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau after the 2008 financial crisis.

https://www.vox.com/2018/8/21/17760916/elizabeth-warren-anti-corruption-act-bill-lobbying-ban-president-trump

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A political coup has taken place and the US Constitution has been overthrown. The so-called conservative justices on the US Supreme Court have lied, cheated and simply made up stuff in order to steal your constitutionally guaranteed freedoms while handing greater constitutional rights to billionaires and their corporations.

With the retirement of US Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, President Trump’s nominee Brett Kavanaugh is expected to continue the coup.

While the corporate false news media, both liberal and conservative, will (and has) showered us with speculation of how Kavanaugh will vote to roll back abortion rights, in reality, Trump nominated Kavanaugh to steal your freedoms by rolling back your constitutional rights and to increase the constitutional rights of the billionaires. The abortion issue, while real, is, in reality, a deliberate distraction, a slight of hand, while the corporate justices alter the constitution in violation of the original intent of the founding fathers.

None of the following points has ever been mentioned by the corporate news media and deliberately so, not even the rich man’s bastion of rich man’s liberalism, the New York Times, has dared mention the following.

The corporate/rich man’s wing of the court has been waging class warfare against the 99 percent for forty years in violation of the US Constitution and legal precedence. So it is considered a foregone conclusion that the far right and fascist billionaires who control the Republican Party and the US Senate will confirm Kavanaugh through their senator puppets.

Theses corrupt activist members of the United States Supreme Court blithely favor conservative money, wealth and power over all else. The current anti-Constitution justices corrupted by powerful vested interests are John Roberts, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, and Neil Gorsuch. All claim to be “original intent jurists.” In other words, when they rule on a legal issue, they claim they follow the original intent of the founding fathers.

All four have shown that their job is to rob the 99 percent of their Constitutional rights and to give more legal rights to the rich and their corporations, which they have done time and again. This legal corruption makes it easier for the rich to steal from the rest of us.

The rich derive most of their political, economic and legal power from their ownership of limited liability corporations. Quite naturally, all five so-called original intent justices argue that publicly traded corporations are persons with all of the legal rights of human citizens. These justices are not ignorant little boys.

They know publicly traded corporations did not come out of a woman’s womb. They know corporations are simply an idea of a form of business structure given life by state legislation. They know the United States Constitution does not even mention the word corporation. They know that not a single one of the founding fathers ever mention “persons” and “corporations” together in any sentence, paragraph, or chapter of any of their voluminous writings. The idea that corporations are people subverts the original intent of the US Constitution, which gives only individual’s legal rights. Ideas of business models were never given any constitutional rights by anybody until corrupt supreme court justices decided it was so.

Since the rich control the mechanisms of corporations, the court’s decision in this regard is to hand greater constitutional rights to a legislatively created tool of the rich, giving the one percent greater power than the founding fathers wanted or been able to imagine. Then the corrupt wing of the court issued another class war decision.

The activist Supreme Court declared in its 2010 Citizen’s United ruling that corporations spending money on political advertisements is free speech, but nowhere in the United States Constitution is such power granted or even recognized. And nowhere in any founding fathers writings is such a power to be found. Now corporate advertisements are drowning out the free speech of all others, especially during election season.

In addition, this ruling eliminated one hundred years of campaign financing laws. Two corrupt US Supreme Court justices, Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia, “participated in political strategy sessions” to advance this case, perhaps while the case was pending, with corporate leaders whose political aims were advanced by the decision,” according to Common Cause.

U.S. Supreme Court Cheif Justice John Roberts gave sworn testimony in his confirmation hearings before the US Senate that he would respect legal precedents. He, obviously, lied under oath. Think about it. A known perjurer in now the Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court. His job is to overthrow the US Constitution on behalf of his class solidarity, just like the other corrupt corporate members of the US Supreme Court. He has been doing a marvelous job.

These corrupt activist justices have simply been making up shit in order to give the rich and their business tools called corporations greater Constitutional rights while diminishing the Constitutional rights of the 99 percent in the process.

The lies, the made-up make-believe that ideas are people and that money is free speech, the perjuries, and working with the rich on cases the justices are about to rule on demonstrate without a doubt that the sole purpose of the corrupted members of the court has been to wage class warfare on behalf of the rich by subverting the US Constitution. Doing so has allowed for a greater political rule and constitutional rights for the rich, and these activist class warriors have succeeded against the original intent of our founding fathers.

Trump nominated Kavanaugh to continue the on-going coup waged by the rich against the 99 percent, the US Constitution and the original intent of the founding fathers.

See the following link for more information. Click here.

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Do you ever wonder how much of your income has been redistributed to the rich since 1980? How much would you be earning now if the rich were only getting the same share of our total national income as they did back in 1980 or so? Back then the 1 percent stole only about 8 to 9 percent. We got the rest.

Now, thanks to the entire corrupt Republican Party, and the vast majority of corrupted Democratic Party politicians, the rich are officially stealing anywhere from 24 to 37+ percent of the total national income, depending on whose figures you are using. This is thanks in large measure to such Democratic Party politicians as Wall Street Senator Ron Wyden, as well as both Clintons’.

We can use Oregon as an approximate gauge for the entire nation since Oregon is only slightly above average in personal income compared to other states.

The figures in the graph above show that the typical Oregonian would be earning “nearly 3 times as much” today “had inequality remained at the 1980 level. Oregon’s actual median income in 2014 was $33,484, compared to $29,150 nationally.

In 2014, the average working Oregonian would have earned about $92,050, or nearly three times as much, had the 1 percent been only stealing from the rest of us at the same rate as they had been back in 1980. That suggests the average US citizen would have been earning around $83,000 a year in 2014, rather than the paltry $29,150.

Imagine how strong the demand for goods and service would be today for the 99 percent if the 1 percent had not rigged each of the three branches of the US government in their favor through corrupt politicians in both major political parties, and their complete corruption of the United States Supreme Court. (See the-editorial-the-rich-dont-want-you-to-read-corruption-of-the-united-states-supreme-court-what-the-rich-and-their-corporate-so-called-news-media-dont-want-you-to-know–JohnHively.Wordpress.com for more on this.)

When inflation is factored into income growth, notice which economic class has gotten the big raises since 1980 in the graph below, and which has not. Note also that the information presented is based on income tax returns, so the US rich have gained quite a bit more than it appears since they have stashed trillions of dollars abroad in Switzerland, Panama and elsewhere.

This means the real income gains of the rich are vastly understated. Thank you Ron Wyden. Thank you Bill Clinton. Thank you Hillary Clinton. Thank you all of you bought off Democrats and Republican politicians. Thank you corrupted US Supreme Court

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The golden rule is at work; he who has the gold makes the rules that determine income and wealth distribution. That is why income inequality has grown so enormous worldwide. The rich are getting wealthier while the rest of us toil in financial purgatory, even the European and US middle class.

The golden rule is also why the global economy created a record number of billionaires last year, exacerbating inequality amid a weakening of workers’ rights and a corporate push to maximize shareholder returns, charity organization Oxfam International said in a new report.

The folks at Oxfam define severe poverty as those people living on $1.25 or less a day. and according to Oxfam estimates, about 1/3 of the world’s population lives at or below that level.

The world’s 2043 billionaires saw their wealth surge by $762 billion, which is enough money to end extreme poverty seven times over, according to Oxfam.

According to separate data compiled by Bloomberg, the top 500 billionaires’ net worth (wealth) grew 24% to $5.38 trillion in 2017, while the world’s richest person, Amazon.com Inc.’s Jeff Bezos, saw a gain of $33.7 billion.

“The billionaire boom is not a sign of a thriving economy but a symptom of a failing economic system,” said Winnie Byanyima, executive director of Oxfam International. “The people who make our clothes, assemble our phones and grow our food are being exploited.” Those people are also the folks without the gold with which to purchase political power in the so-called democracies of the world.

Oxfam had published the report as global leaders, chief executives and bankers arrived in Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting. This is an event in which the rich of the world share plans of how to rip the rest of us off. A spokesperson for Oxfam, however, noted “that many of the world’s elite say they’re concerned about income inequality, but most governments are “shamefully failing” to improve the matter. That’s because the politicians managing the affairs of those governments are being paid to do nothing to rectify growing poverty throughout the world, and they are being paid to ensure the billionaires gain more and more of the world’s income and wealth. This is called corruption.

Oxfam called on governments to limit shareholder and executive returns while ensuring workers receive a living wage. It also recommended eliminating the gender pay gap and raising taxes on the wealthy, among other suggestions.”

“People are ready for change,” Byanyima said. “They want a limit on the power and the wealth which sits in the hands of so few.” In addition, p0eople want to limit the effects of the golden rule which allows the rich to control the distribution of income and wealth and send into their bank accounts the vast majority of income and wealth created.

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