Posts Tagged wallstreet
I cannot believe the extent to which I – as a liberal – keep overestimating Obama. And with that I mean overestimate his backbone and willingness - as well ability – to truly fight for his constituents instead of pulling his tail in and cowering into a corner, like he did during the first 2012 Presidential debate with Mitt Romney this past Wednesday.
If there is one thing I was sure of then it was that Obama would obliterate this plutocratic puke Mitt Romney at the debates; yet all he did was just stand there and nod like a school boy being dressed down by his principal. Obama did not even make an attempt to correct Romney who unloaded all these horrendous and shameless lies onto him and the American people. It was as if the past year – and specifically the past few months – just had not happened.
We all knew Romney wanted to reset the campaign, but why did Obama? During the debate Obama, ironically enough, became the proverbial empty suit Eastwood has mocked just a few weeks ago during the RNC. He was so bad, he made Romney look good. That is how epic-ly bad his comatose, cowardly performance was.
It is amazing. Romney has no tax plan, no health care plan, no jobs plan or any other kind of plan economic recovery plan for this country other than the busted “trickle down economics” myth and the “anything before Obama“mentality. His campaign consists of leaving behind a messy trail of lies, gross manipulations, gas lighting, flip flopping on issues and just a lot of foot in the mouth moments insulting our allies and adding fuel to century’s old rivalries while masking his real agenda of catering to the greed of the 1% at the expense of everyone else.
Will the Real Mitt Romney Please Stand Up
The 47% speech was the real Romney; that speech was from the heart – behind the cameras and behind closed doors, he was finally speaking the truth, showing his disdain for the American people and those who aren’t in the millionaire’s club. Yet he somehow managed to wipe the floor with Obama during the debate. And he did so not by presenting facts and making a strong case for his candidacy, but by telling shameless, boldfaced lies – which is something to be expected from a corporate raider who spent his entire life scamming people.
For example, Romney said that Obama does not like bipartisanship, that he does not reach out to Republicans. In reality, everytime Obama tried to work with Republicans, they went out of their way to obstruct him. In fact, after Republicans ended up with both the House and Senate majority in 2010, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell admitted that “the single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.”
Why did Obama not mention any of this?
Obama did not mention Romney’s supremely insulting and incriminating 47% speech - in which he was for once speaking from the heart, he did not mention Bain Capital at all – which says a lot more about Romney and his philosophy than anything else, he did not mention his 14% tax rate and he also did not confront him about his tax returns and his refusal to release them.
Finally, in a year where women’s reproductive rights have been under a vicious assault – from transvaginal probing of women who want to get abortions, to defunding Planned Parenthood, calling Sandra Fluke a slut for using contraceptives to Akin’s ”legitimate rape” and woman-give-off-certain-juices-when-raped-so-they-don’t-become-pregnant remarks, it was beyond bizarre, but mostly disappointing, that Obama just did not even mention anything in that regard. He looked like a school boy being dressed down by the principal.
The thing is that the above mentioned were issues that got a lot of undecided voters and those liberals who felt alienated by Obama’s repeated giving in to Republican demands, on Obama’s side. Yet he did not even mention them. And for that matter, he also did not mention same sex marriage and his support thereof.
What the fuck is wrong with this man?
Over 70 million people watched and this could have been an amazing opportunity for Obama to reach out and bring across the message and for once and all put an end to Romney’s lies and right out confront him and call him out in his lies. And he blew it. The man blew it. He did the same thing that both John Kerry and Al Gore did, fail to take the battle to Romney.
The folly with Obama is that he does not want to fight dirty – if one can consider stating facts and confronting a liar as playing dirty – and in in some ill conceived sense for bipartisanship he has given Republicans everything they wanted. What he he needs to realize, however, is that you cannot play fair and nice when you swim with sharks. Obama is going to have to get dirty. He’s going to have to kick, bite, scratch, and claw his way forward. Republicans have no interest in working with Obama or the American people, as they have made abundantly clear in the past by categorically opposing policies that would benefit the American people for no other reason than making Obama look bad.
Of course that is something he should have been doing for the last four years yet failed. He failed to bring true health care reform to this country in the from of government run insurance side by side private insurance; he utterly and miserably failed in the Bush tax cuts issues – extending them for the richest people in exchange for nine months more of unemployment benefits; he did not go after BP; he did not go after Wall Street. He stayed mums on the Right wing’s audacious and callous attacks on women’s reproductive rights – only mentioning it as a talking point during his speeches – and he let Republicans hold the raise of the debt ceiling hostage in exchange of Obama budging in on budget issues – which is absurd because the debt ceiling is about money already spent while the budget is about money going to be spend.
There is a time and place for diplomacy and holding the moral high ground. And there is a time to fight. Trying to hold the moral high ground while being lied to and bullied, as was the case with the debate on Wednesday, is not one of those occasions where diplomacy will work. Obama can’t win on Hope and Change and Yes We Can this time because there is no longer any Hope, there was no real meaningful Change, and he may still believe that Yes We Can is possible but there are a lot of Buts after the slogan.
On Wednesday the President did not make the case for himself; he did not call out the lies or even make the case as to why we should vote for him. I could not sleep that night wondering what has happened to Obama and what a truly horrific future is to await all of us if Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan – two people who represent the cold side of humanity – were to become the leaders of this nation because of Obama’s lack of courage. I also kept wondering how Mitt Romney – with his horrible policies and the plutocratic, dystopian future he has in stow for all of us, - could even get this far.
Yet there is a real chance he may make it. I blame uninformed and “independent” voters. How can anyone think positively of a guy who in his heart of hearts believes that half of Americans are irresponsible mooches who view themselves as victims who are uninspired and unmotivated to improve their lives and irresponsible?
I also would love to know who taught Obama that checking your balls at the door is a sign of a competent and strong leader. It is one thing to get riled up confirming the stereotype of the ”angry black man”, it is quite something else to stand there and let someone bully and insult you in the face while you say nothing. Of course, this wouldn’t concern me if the American people weren’t intellectually challenged, but they are. The fact that Obama has this knack of regularly fucking up when it comes down do it is remarkable. That man has a sense for screwing up when his supporters count on him the most, it is amazing.
That this is a world of the rich, by the rich and for the rich becomes evident to me everyday. The latest example to the point: Puff Daddy’s son who received a $ 54,000 scholarship to attend UCLA despite his father’s whopping half a billion dollar wealth.
Puff Daddy is considered the riches man in hip-hop and his wealth was estimated at nearly $550 million by Forbes magazine last year.
The rap mogul’s oldest boy will attend top athletic powerhouse UCLA on a full Division 1 scholarship to play football. The scholarship is only available to the most elite high school athletes, aged 19 and under.
At the same time, UCLA is a school where tuition and fees have tripled in the past ten years, rendering the once affordable UC an expensive school resulting in open protests and general dissatisfaction on the side of students who find it increasingly more un-affordable to attend UCLA.
Naturally, some have questioned the rationale of the school to give this much money to the son of a multimillionaire, especially in light of the astronomic budget crisis in California in general and the UC system in particular.
“UCLA’s athletic department needs to consider the fact that perhaps there is another athlete on the football team, who could perhaps really use this scholarship,” UCLA student Neshemah Keetin told CBS Los Angeles.
In its response to criticism over the award, UCLA stressed its “robust financial aid program,” 30 percent of which it said is funded by tuition and fee revenue:
“Unlike need-based scholarships, athletic scholarships are awarded to students strictly on the basis of their athletic and academic ability — not their financial need. Athletic scholarships, such as those awarded to football or basketball players, do not rely on state funds. Instead, these scholarships are entirely funded through UCLA Athletics ticket sales, corporate partnerships, media contracts and private donations from supporters,” the statement said.
Others have argued similarly, namely that his son earned the scholarship and has every right to it, regardless of his father’s wealth.
But it is really not as straightforward as the wanna-be millionaires who keep pandering to the cause of the wealthy in the hopes that one day they will be one of them, claim. And while no one is debating the fact that Justin Combs is a good student and capable athlete who earned this scholarship, the uproar is not about his scholastic abilities or questioning them or even depriving him of what he rightfully earned, this is about a teenager receiving funds to attend college he does not need. Sean “Diddy” Combs is said to have given him a $ 360,000 Maybach for his 16th birthday.
The statement bu UCLA is misleading in its assertion that this is a non-issue since the funding for Justin Comb’s scholarship does not come from the state but through ticket sales, corporate partnerships, media contracts and private donations from supporters.
While it is true that the money Combs receives does not come from tax payer dollars, that is beside the point because regardless of the source, the money has to come from somewhere no matter what you call it and every dollar that goes to some rich kid that really doesn’t need it, is taking away money from someone who does.
The whole point of a scholarship is, or ought to be, to honor the work of excellent students and provide them with an opportunity to obtain higher education which they would not be able to do without the scholarship. Giving people who are wealthy and can afford it money to go to school sort of defeats the whole purpose.
If Justin Combs was independent and could take care of himself without his father’s money, yes, he should be able to keep it. But he is not. His father has been and continues to support him financially, therefore there is no need for him to also keep the money.
Pimp Daddy’s son doesn’t need a scholarship when his dad is sitting on half a billion dollars, just like wealthy people and millionaires don’t need tax breaks.
Taking something you don’t need is not earning it, it is being greedy.
And that is what it ultimately comes down to once again. And that is also why so many people cheer for it and don’t think he should return the $ 54,000.
Greed and with it the love for money are the cultures that have been fostered deep into the American mind. Any unscrupulous act in this country is excused, condoned and apologized for as long as it creates wealth. Whether the means by which one arrives at that wealth is unethical or hurting others is irrelevant. If it makes money, it goes and is erroneously called The American Way, The American Dream or “success”.
The sad reality is that UCLA is in a budgetary crisis. Tuition has gone up, the economy down and lots of students will have to either take out more student loans, thus remaining in debt for a long time after entering the workforce, to be able to attend college or they will not be able to attend at all. In fact, UCLA became a focal point in the Occupy Wall Street protests, with students rallying against a planned 16 percent tuition fee hike. In April, the school was forced to embarrassingly clawback $27 million in financial aid accidentally deposited into students’ accounts.
The Culture of Greed
Given the genuine crisis the UC system finds itself in, scraping for every dollar to be able to make education semi-affordable to people, is it unreasonable, jealousy or assholish even to ask that the son of a semi-billionaire not accept the $54,000 athletic scholarship? Don’t we have a responsibility toward one another as human beings to do the right? Is the “each person on his own” mentality the American Way? Are these the values we ought to instill upon future generations? The bottom line?
No wonder Mitt Romney thinks that being a business person is the one and only legitimate claim to the Presidency. In fact, the entire platform he is running on is based on this ridiculous assumption. He actually believes that every American can and should want to be a millionaire. As if jobs like teacher, firefighter, nurse, scientist or professor could ever produce millionaires. Jobs that, nonetheless, are vital to the functioning of society.
We are a nation of wanna-bes chasing the money or die trying. And of course we embrace and applaud anyone and anything that caters to that notion, thinking that maybe by supporting such notions we somehow “reserve” a place for ourselves in the millionaires hall of fame.
I think Bill Maher, as usual, summarized my sentiments quite brilliantly:
“Mitt Romney has to start understanding why people don’t like him: it is not because he is rich, it is how he got rich. Now here are some other rich guys. Here’s Henry Ford with his Model T. Walt Disney with an early cartoon idea. Jobs and Wozniak with their first desktop.
You see what the first three have that Mitt doesn’t? A product. Something they made besides money.
You know, venture capitalists are not creators. They’re businessmen who find weak companies, and prey on them. And Mitt can’t understand why anyone would ever question capitalism no matter how feral it gets. ’What? We found a wounded animal and we ate it!’
At one of the debates, Mitt said, ‘I won’t try and define who’s rich and who’s not rich, I want everybody to be rich.’ Cue the morons in the audience clapping their hands like seals at a Sea World getting a bucket of chum.
Well, I can define who’s rich and who’s not. Who’s rich is Mitt Romney. And who’s not is someone making $26,000 a year. And the success or failure of his campaign will depend on his ability to convince someone making $26,000 a year that he, Mitt, a rich guy, knows how to make them rich too. And if you elect him, he’ll tell you the secret.
It’s not a political platform, so much as a wealth seminar. This is the same thing that makes guyslike Tony Robbins rich. They have a secret. But the secret turns out to be that they’re rich because they’re robbing you! And somehow Americans are good with this.
Yes, that’s how Mitt Romney rolls, straight outta Salt Lake. Get equity or die trying. Remember, Mitt knows the secret. Obama doesn’t know the secret. As Mitt always says, Obama never even ran a corner store. He was a community organizer helping poor people! Bleh! What would you rather do, help poor people, or have money in your mouth?”