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Posts Tagged ‘Koch Brothers’

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You only need to look at the Bush tax cuts of almost 15 years ago to recognize how tax cuts for the rich destroy jobs and redistribute income from the 99 to the 1 percent in the process. George W Bush was the first president since Herbert Hoover to experience negative job growth during his presidency. Now Trump will be the second president since Hoover to experience negative job growth. Here’s how the scam works.

The tax cuts for corporations will increase their after-tax profits. This will be handed out to the rich in the form of higher stock prices (capital gains) and dividend payments.

Meanwhile, the tax-cuts for the rich will deliver them more after-tax income with which to purchase more speculative investments. Both corporations and the individual wealthy will then inflate the current stock market bubble by purchasing more stocks, futures options, and other things of those natures. (A futures market is an auction market in which participants buy and sell commodity and futures contracts for delivery on a specified future date)

Naturally, this will bid up the price we pay for commodities, such as food, natural gas and oil. The difference between the current prices and the new higher (inflated via tax cuts for the rich) prices we will pay means that more of our income will be redistributed from us to the 1 percent.

In other words, we will be made to pay more to the rich for the food we eat, the natural gas we use to heat our homes, and the gasoline we need to power our cars, as well as other things, and that extra money we will be forced to pay will go straight into the pockets of the billionaires, people like Warren Buffett, the Koch Brothers, and Donald Trump.

The stock market bubble, perhaps the biggest in US history, will now continue to grow as both corporations and the individual wealthy have more money to bid stock prices up. The stock market bears a remarkable resemblance to a Ponzi scheme. A Ponzi scheme is a form of fraud in which belief in the success of a nonexistent enterprise (or artificially high stock prices) is fostered by the payment of quick returns to the first investors from money invested by later investors. In this case, the rich will be paid more and more for so long as the bubble continues to inflate, and for so long as it takes for the bubble to fizzle out. Corporate management will feel the pressure to export more and more US jobs in order to pay what is necessary to prop up their stock prices.

In other words, the tax cuts will produce greater pressure on corporate managements to export more US jobs to low age nations whenever possible. The difference between the old higher US wages and the new lower overseas wages will go straight into the pockets of the superwealthy. The rich will get all the increasing returns on investment from us, the stakeholders, rather than later investors. In that way, along with one other way which I shall not go into now, the stock market closely resembles a Ponzi scheme.

Trump’s disastrous tax cuts will cause a one trillion dollar increase in the federal deficit over the next ten years. Naturally, in order to reduce the deficit, Republicans will demand reductions of federal expenditures on education, road maintenance, social security payments to the elderly and disabled, Medicare, Medicaid, Welfare, food stamps and other programs that benefit the middle class and the poor, because of the deficit they have created with their tax cuts for the rich. In this way, the billionaires will become richer at the expense of everybody else, thanks to the unnecessary tax cuts.

Meanwhile, quite naturally, Republicans will insist on increased federal military expenditures and expanded deportations of undocumented immigrants because these programs are highly profitable to their base, which is the billionaires who control the party, and not the grassroots. The US currently spends more on its military than the next 26 nations combined, 25 of who are US allies. Talk about overkill or unnecessary.

The tax cuts are unnecessary inasmuch as the 1 percent are stealing a record amount of the total national income, going from 8 percent in 1980 to 37+ percent nowadays. Three people, (Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffett, and Bill Gates now own wealth (assets) than the bottom 50 percent of the US population. The top 1 percent now own more wealth than the bottom 90 percent. In addition, corporate profits are at record levels. So neither corporations or the rich need the money except as a way to steal more money from the rest of us, and the money from their theft will keep those stock markets, futures market, and other markets boiling upward until the bubbles pop. And that will produce a disaster for Trump, the Republicans, and us.

Every Republican who voted yes on the bill knows everything that I have written above. Yet, they still voted yes. This shows that the billionaires are their real constituents and not the grassroots. They all know the bill was passed on a series of lies.

Read more: Futures Market https://www.investopedia.com/terms/f/futuresmarket.asp#ixzz507u73Y1m The d
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The billionaires who control the US federal government and both major political parties are quaking in their boots because the Mexican government has increased the national minimum wage ever so slightly, by .45 cents per day. No doubt the billionaires are worried the increase will cut into corporate profits, slow the increase in share prices during the current economic and stock market bubbles, and perhaps even slow the increase in dividend payments. Heaven forbid!

CNN reports that “Nearly 25 million Mexicans are getting a pay raise next week. From $4.25 to $4.70 — a day. Mexican government and business leaders agreed on Tuesday to raise the country’s minimum wage starting on December 1 to 88.36 pesos from 80.04 pesos. The 10% raise is good news for 24.7 million Mexicans who work either one or two minimum wage jobs. But it also resurfaces a key complaint by American workers who voted for President Trump, in part because of his pledge to renegotiate NAFTA, the trade pact between the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Trump blames NAFTA for the loss of many American jobs. Cheap labor has attracted American companies to Mexico for decades.”

Trump, of course, is correct. Millions of US jobs have been exported to Mexico since before Nafta, and millions more have been created there by US corporations rather than here because the terms of Nafta paved the legal road to do so. Generally, the numbers have been egregiously understated by researchers because the methodology they use deliberately understates US job losses.

What Trump doesn’t want US citizens to know, which is also what the billionaires who run the Republican Party and the Democratic Party don’t want you to know is that US income and wealth inequalities have been fueled by Nafta, and the stock markets have been booming since Nafta, precisely because Nafta has allowed US corporations to export millions of US jobs to Mexico. The difference between the old higher US wages and benefits and the new lower Mexican wages with no benefits goes straight into the already super-sized and ultra-fat wallets of the uber-rich via higher corporate profits, surging share prices and rising dividends.

Do you ever wonder how Warren Buffett, Phil Knight, the Koch Brothers, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and others ever got so much richer than they should be? These wonder boys have always been big-time supporters of cheap Mexican and cheaper Chinese, Vietnamese and Bangladesh wages with no benefits and fewer worker safety and relaxed or nonexistent environmental controls in those and other nations. They also have prospered because of these things.

So these rich folks owe quite a debt to the record income and wealth inequality they have created to Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, George W. Bush, Paul Ryan, and Wall Street Senator Ron Wyden. The rest of us pay the price of the massive political corruption they have created.

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Here is what the corporate news media doesn’t want you to know. What is really odd about the Keystone pipeline is that this Canadian corporation is using eminent domain to dispossess US citizens of their property in order to expand it. The only mention of eminent domain in the US constitution is for “public purposes,” whereas the Keystone Pipeline is clearly a private profit-making venture. Your government is allowing US investors who are heavily invested in the Keystone Pipeline to dispossess less financially endowed US citizens of their property. That’s how corrupt your government is, and especially the corporate wing of the US Supreme Court.

As for the pipeline leak the news media doesn’t want you to know about.

About 210,000 gallons (5,000 barrels) of oil leaked Thursday from TransCanada’s Keystone oil pipeline near Amherst, South Dakota, drawing fierce outcry from pipeline opponents, and meek coverage by the corporate news media.

The leak, the largest spill to date in South Dakota, comes just days before Nebraska regulators decide on whether its controversial sister project—the Keystone XL (KXL) Pipeline—will go forward.

“Enough is enough. Pipelines leak—it’s not a question of ‘if’, but ‘when.’ The pending permit for TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline should be flatly rejected by Nebraska’s Public Service Commission (PSC), but know that no matter what the outcome, the fight’s not over yet,” said Scott Parkin, Rainforest Action Network’s Organizing Director. “We need to stop all expansion of extreme fossil fuels such as tar sands oil—and we need the finance community to stop funding these preventable climate disasters—disasters for the climate, the environment, and Indigenous rights.”

President Obama had rejected the Keystone Pipeline expansion, mainly because billionaire Warren Buffett likely told him in gentle terms to do so. Buffett owns BNSF railroad, which is the largest carrier of oil in the United States. Had the pipeline expansion gone through, BNSF’s profits would have suffered, and Uncle Warren didn’t want that.

President Trump reinstated the Keystone Pipeline because the Koch Brothers and other oil investors that invest heavily in the Republican Party made him do it. It’s that simple. The Koch’s, for example, are heavily invested in the pipeline as well as the Canadian tar sands, which produces the oil that will flow through the pipeline.

As for the oil spill, Dave Flute, tribal chairman of the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate, said. “We are concerned that the oil spill is close to our treaty land, but we are trying to stay positive that they are getting the spill contained and that they will share any environmental assessments with the tribal agency.” If Flute really believes management at Keystone will share any honest “environmental assessments with the tribal agency,” he is an idiot and a fool.

According to TransCanada, the Keystone pipeline system delivers Canadian and U.S. crude oil supplies to markets around North America, stretching 4,324 kilometers (2,687 miles) in length. It starts from Hardisty, Alta., east into Manitoba where it turns south and crosses the border into North Dakota. It then runs south through South Dakota to Steele City, Neb., where it splits. One arm goes east through Missouri for deliveries into Wood River and Patoka, Ill., and the other runs south through Oklahoma to Cushing and onward to Port Arthur and Houston, Texas.

The proposed KXL would add to the massive Keystone system, with its line starting in Hardisty, Alberta and ending in Steele City. Nebraka’s government needs to issue permits in order to construct the pipeline, and public discussion begins soon.

 

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The corporate news pounced on the latest report issued by the Board of Trustees of the Social Security Trust Fund. CNBC News interviewed Michael Tanner of the Koch Brothers funded Cato Institute. Tanner was dumb enough or dishonest enough to say, “Every bond redeemed from the Social Security Trust Fund has to come out of the general revenue, so we’re actually increasing the federal deficit in order to pay off social security.” What a lie, and in many ways.

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The Social Security Trust Fund has a $2.6 trillion surplus. The Trust Fund purchased US Treasury bonds and collects about $160 billion in interest a year. Bonds are loans. The US government borrowed the $2.6 trillion from the Trust Fund, and it will soon be time to pay that money back to the Trust Fund. That will not add to the deficit at all since the Trust Fund did not need to invest in the bonds, but it was a prudent thing to do to collect the interest. But lets get to Tanner’s lie; the US government issues and sells new bonds to pay for any bonds coming due. Only interest is paid from the general funds unless there is a budget surplus that allows for paying down the total deficit. The folks at CNBC News made certain not to question Tanner’s lie. That’s because they want to keep us ignorant.

Second, the Chinese government has trillions of dollars invested in US treasury bonds, as does Wall Street. When the US treasury bonds held by the Chinese or Goldman Sachs, or US hedge funds come due, nobody says that by paying its debt, the US government is adding to the deficit. Why is a different standard applied to Wall Street and Chinese investors on the one hand, and the Social Security Trust Fund on the other hand? The answer, of course, is CNBC wants to keep us ignorant. The Social Security Trust Fund has not contributed a penny to the US deficit, but they don’t want us to know that.

The Trustee report mentioned the coming of a deficit for the Trust Fund in 2034, which will result in payment reductions for retirees of approximately 16 percent, unless something is done to plug the gap. Ethan Wolff-Mann, reporting for Yahoo News, claimed “A root cause for the financial woes for Medicare and Social Security is the aging baby boomer population.”

That’s another lie meant to distract you from reality. Tens of millions of US jobs that paid into the social security trust fund have been exported to low wage nations such as China. The difference between the old US wages and the new Chinese, Vietnamese, Pakistani, and Mexican wages have all gone into the pockets of the rich via higher corporate earnings, rising dividends, and surging share prices. Capital gains from the sale of assets (such as corporate stocks and bonds), and dividends are exempt from social security taxation. The rich, in other words, are not paying social security taxes on the trillions of dollars they have stolen from the rest of us. That’s why there is an impending deficit in the Trust Fund.

So the easiest way, and morally Jesus Christ way, to offset these government policies that have stolen from the Trust Fund is to have a graduated Social Security tax on dividends, as well as on capital gains derived from the sale of stocks and bonds. Of course, a Social Security tax on stock and bond transactions could also achieve the desired effect.

In either case, or in both cases should they be legislatively enacted, the Social Security Trust Fund would be solvent into infinity and most likely a significant raise can be provided to beneficiaries, which would then strengthen the US economy by increasing the demand for goods and services.

Steve Ruis has pointed out, “Note that the SS Trust Fund didn’t choose to buy US Treasuries, it is required to invest all excess funds in US Treasuries by an act of Congress! Some critics have referred to those treasuries as “worthless paper” when trying to undermine the SS system. Amazing!”

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The rise of Donald Trump is a clear sign that the Republican Establishment is out of touch with the Republican base. The base can no longer be fooled. The Republican Establishment represents Wall Street, Big Oil, and corporate leaders who benefit from international income redistribution scams, falsely marketed as trade agreements, as well as open borders, are completely at odds with the base. The last people to figure that out was the establishment.

A recent Harvard/Politico poll showed 85 percent of Republicans believe international trade scams cost the US more jobs than it creates. Yet the establishment, along with President Obama and Democratic henchmen, such as Wall Street Senator Ron Wyden, continue to push the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), the largest income and political power redistribution scam in US history.

During the presidential primaries, poll after poll showed Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders with much wider leads over Donald Trump than Hillary Clinton. This suggests that many Republicans are ready for change, and many of them were not happy with Trump. But Trump was their only choice.

The Republican Establishment was often battling it out with the Koch Brothers and their Tea Party wing of the Republican Party. The Koch’s also want trade scams and open borders in opposition to the base.

All of this suggests the Republican Party may be on the verge of a long-term splintering, especially since a large chunk of the base preferred Sanders, a New Deal Democrat disguised as a Democratic Socialist.

This also suggests why in 2015 Republican Wall Street US Senate Leader Mitch McConnell insisted to President Obama that a Democrat had to introduce Fast Track legislation into the senate. Wall Street’s choice to do this was Wall Street Senator Ron Wyden, a man whose votes in congress on behalf of Wall Street had cost his state a minimum of a hundred thousand jobs in the last ten years. No Republican senator dared to introduce the legislation in the senate. So the establishment clearly knew it was out of touch with its base.

 

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GMO

Vermont’s GMO labeling law will go into effect on July 1, 2016. The food industry spent tens of millions of dollars to try to stop this, but they apparently have given up the fight.

Last year, the Koch brothers controlled congressional representative, Mike Pompeo, attempted to get congress to pass the DARK Act, otherwise known as the Deny American’s the Right to Know Act, which would have stripped Americans voting rights across the United States when it came to voting on labeling GMO poisons.

Numerous independent studies link GMO’s to tumors, asthma, cancer, allergies, birth defects, deformities, kidney damage, liver damage, and several other maladies. For example, a French study showed that massive tumors began growing in rats fed only GMO foods after only three months. The industry studies, however, show that they only allegedly tested rats up to three months, which makes one wonder how many other tests the industry tried on rats that lasted longer than three months. See http://www.cbsnews.com/news/study-on-genetically-modified-corn-herbicide-and-tumors-reignites-controversy/. One has to wonder why the USDA approved GMO poison for human consumption back in 1996 considering they only looked at industry studies.

The industry studies, however, demonstrate absolute safety to humans, except for the studies that have been leaked to the public. See Cows Fed GMO Corn Died–Organic Authority. Also see A Valuable Reputation–the New Yorker.

For more information, click on the following link. Vermont GMO Labeling Law Going into Effect–Ecowatch

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Scientists employed by Exxon Mobile had the data showing climate change was occurring back in the 1970s. They also came to the conclusion that carbon dioxide emissions were the cause of it. Recently, the internal documents were leaked to the public.

This blog is about income redistribution, political power and corruption. Climate change isn’t a thing of interest for this blog, but corporate corruption is. This conspiracy is complete corruption.

According to the internal Exxon memo, Exxon executives decided to follow the path of Big Tobacco, which denied the link between tobacco and a variety of ailments, such as lung cancer, despite their own studies demonstrating these links. The GMO corporations are also following this format of lies when it comes to their products.

So Exxon executives began elevating offshore drilling platforms more than thirty years ago to prepare for rising sea levels while following a sustained public relations campaign to deny the relationship between their products and climate change.

“Here’s what senior company scientist James Black told Exxon’s management committee in 1977: “In the first place, there is general scientific agreement that the most likely manner in which mankind is influencing the global climate is through carbon dioxide release from the burning of fossil fuels.” To determine if this was so, the company outfitted an oil tanker with carbon dioxide sensors to measure concentrations of the gas over the ocean and then funded elaborate computer models to help predict what temperatures would do in the future.

The results of all that work were unequivocal. By 1982, in an internal “corporate primer,” Exxon’s leaders were told that, despite lingering unknowns, dealing with climate change “would require major reductions in fossil fuel combustion.” Unless that happened, the primer said, citing independent experts, “there are some potentially catastrophic events that must be considered…. Once the effects are measurable, they might not be reversible.” But that document, “given wide circulation” within Exxon, was also stamped “Not to be distributed externally.”

So here’s what happened. Exxon used its knowledge of climate change to plan its own future. The company, for instance, leased large tracts of the Arctic for oil exploration, territory where, as a company scientist pointed out in 1990, “potential global warming can only help lower exploration and development costs.” Not only that but, “from the North Sea to the Canadian Arctic,” Exxon and its affiliates set about “raising the decks of offshore platforms, protecting pipelines from increasing coastal erosion and designing helipads, pipelines and roads in a warming and buckling Arctic.” In other words, the company started climate-proofing its facilities to head off a future its own scientists knew was inevitable.”

Last fall, a Yale study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences showed that money from the Koch Brothers and Exxon played a key roll in polarizing the climate debate within this nation, even though Exxon’s own science showed the climate change was on the rise due to CO2 emissions.

The company’s sins—of omission and commission—may even turn out to be criminal. New York Attorney General Eric Scneiderman has launched a criminal investigation into this matter. This may account for why Exxon’s current CEO, Ray Tillerson, no longer claims the world is cooling, and that CO2 emissions “are having an impact” on global warming.

The Washington Post reported two months ago that ExxonMobil has a far saner view of global warming than the national Republican party.

Fred Hiatt, the paper’s centrist editorial page editor, drops this bombshell:

With no government action, Exxon experts told us during a visit to The Post last week, average temperatures are likely to rise by a catastrophic (my word, not theirs) 5 degrees Celsius, with rises of 6, 7 or even more quite possible.

Exxon Mobile website states the issue clearly;

“The risk of climate change is clear and the risk warrants action. Increasing carbon emissions in the atmosphere are having a warming effect. There is a broad scientific and policy consensus that action must be taken to further quantify and assess the risks.”

For more on this, check out the following link.

Ecowatch Reporting

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