• All governments lie, but disaster lies in wait for countries whose officials smoke the same hashish they give out.

  • I.F. Stone

zaterdag 13 april 2013

The Assault on Gold 3


IMF sells gold, China is buying


Published on Apr 12, 2013
Watch the full Keiser Report E431 on Saturday!
In this episode of the Keiser Report, Max Keiser and Stacy Herbert discuss the Old Lady's gold habit, the gold that may be leaving Cyprus' central bank (or not) and Confucius' famous saying: "IMF STUPID SELL TO GOLD, I'M BUYING." They also look at the Federal Reserve data accidentally sent to Wall Street bank lobbyists and the venture capitalists entering the new Land Grab. In the second half of the show, Max Keiser talks to James Turk about money, gold, bitcoin, currency wars and the nature of bank failures: to look good until the bank fails overnight. They also discuss Austrian school theories on money and how they relate to gold and to bitcoin.

Follow Max Keiser on Twitter: http://twitter.com/maxkeiser

Henry Giroux 5


Lil Wayne's Lyrical Fascism

Friday, 12 April 2013 00:00By Henry A. GirouxTruthout | Op-Ed

Lil Wayne.(Photo: Georgetown Voice / Flickr)Lil Wayne's racist and sexist song is just one example of the morally dead zone that too many individuals, institutions, intellectuals and politicians occupy in a land of massive inequality in wealth and power, says Giroux.

"People who treat other people as less than human must not be surprised when the bread they have cast on the waters comes floating back to them, poisoned. . . . People pay for what they do, and still more for what they have allowed themselves to become, and they pay for it, very simply by the lives they lead." - James Baldwin

We have come a long way from the struggles that launched the civil rights movement over 50 years ago. During that historical period, brave men and women marched, integrated white-only lunch counters, defied orders to sit in the back of the bus, challenged police brutality and put their bodies in the face of danger for civil and economic rights. Many of them were beaten, attacked by police dogs and jailed. They fought for a higher cause, and in some cases gave their lives in the face of insufferable injustices. They embodied the ethical grammar of hope, one that demanded courage, struggle and the creation of social movements.

It is hard to view, even contemplate contemporary America in that historical march toward justice and democracy. We live in a historical moment when money corrupts everything from how we view social provisions and schools to what passes as entertainment and popular culture. We live at a time when politics serves the bankers, hedge fund managers, the corporate elite and free market fundamentalists. The legacies of the past now become fodder for advertisements; revolutionary slogans are trivialized; and the pictures of modern-day heroes and freedom fighters are used to sell T-shirts. Even memory and the practice of moral witnessing are commodified, if not corrupted.

One particularly egregious example comes from the rapper Lil Wayne, who in a remix version of the song Karate Chop by rapper Future, mocked Emmett Till with the lyric: ". . . beat the pussy up like Emmett Till." While a critical response was swift from members of the hip hop community and community leaders, it mostly focused on Lil Wayne's racist remarks. What many critics failed to do was to look at the underlying conditions that make such racist, sexist blabber and historical amnesia possible. They also largely failed to raise crucial questions about how such ethically and politically demeaning material can be used to make records and films that flood the culture with a discourse measured favorably for their shock value rather than the ways in which such material denigrates history, individuals and social movements. 

This racist and sexist comment exceeds bad taste. It points to a society in which economics is divorced from ethics, profit is the ultimate measure of success and disposable populations are now fair game for ridicule, harassment and insulting behavior. Lil Wayne is just one example of the morally dead zone that too many artists, individuals, institutions, intellectuals and politicians occupy in a land of massive inequality in wealth and power.

Lil Wayne's allusion to Emmitt Till in his lyrics represents more than stupidity. It represents how normalized the culture of cruelty has become and how it wraps itself in a popular culture that is increasingly racist, misogynistic and historically illiterate. This is neoliberalism's revenge on young people in that it elevates profits over justice and the practice of moral witnessing, and in doing so, creates artists and other young people who mimic a racist and authoritarian politics and are completely clueless about it.
Celebrity culture is the underside of the new illiteracy in America, the soft edge of fascism with its unbridled celebration of wealth, narcissism and glamor. My comments on Emmitt Till in the beginning of my book, Stormy Weather: Katrina and the Politics of Disposability point to a different use of memory, one that engages in moral witnessing and tries to prevent justice from dying in each of us, in the public sphere and in our relations with others. It is worth repeating as a counter to Lil Wayne's complicity with the kind of musical fascism that runs through the country like an electric current:

"Emmett Till's body arrived home in Chicago in September 1955. White racists in Mississippi had tortured, mutilated, and killed the young 14-year-old African-American boy for allegedly whistling at a white woman. Determined to make visible the horribly mangled face and twisted body of the child as an expression of racial hatred and killing, Mamie Till, the boy's mother, insisted that the coffin, interred at the A.A. Ranier Funeral Parlor in the South Side of Chicago, be left open for four long days. While mainstream news organizations ignored the horrifying image, Jet magazine published an unedited photo of Till's face taken while he lay in his coffin. Shaila Dawn points out that "[m]utilated is the word most often used to describe the face of Emmett Till after his body was hauled out of the Tallahatchie river in Mississippi. Inhuman is more like it: melted, bloated, missing an eye, swollen so large that its patch of wiry hair looks like that of a balding old man, not a handsome, brazen 14-year-old boy." The Jet photos not only made visible the violent effects of the racial state; they also fuelled massive public anger, especially among blacks, and helped to launch the Civil Rights Movement. 1"

We live at a time when heroes of the civil rights generation such Rosa Parks, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King, Jr. and Angela Davis are now replaced by business tycoons such as Lloyd Blankfein, Jamie Dimon and Henry Paulson. The older heroes sacrificed to alleviate the suffering of others, while the new heroes of the media drawn from corporate culture live off the suffering of others. Celebrity culture is a culture of greed, over-paid financial looters and media pundits who reproduce the market-driven and politically paralyzing sexist and racist grammars of suffering, state violence and disposability.

Maybe Lil Wayne should read about the history of the civil rights movement before he fashions lyrics that sound as if they were written by the racists that killed this young man. Maybe the American public should go further and ask what kind of country creates people like Lil Wayne and what can be done to create a formative culture that would stop this kind of racism and sexism in its tracks, rather then reward it.
1.
Henry A. Giroux, Stormy Weather: Katrina and the Politics of Disposability(Boulder: Paradigm, 2006), pp. 1-2

De Con Men



Gisteren opende de Volkskrant op de voorpagina met de volgende kop:

Kabinet zoekt herstel en vertrouwen

De krant voegde hier enkele regels verder aan toe 

Premier Rutte spreekt van een 'historisch moment' en een 'akkoord van vertrouwen.'

Tweemaal het woord 'vertrouwen.'  Wat betekent het begrip 'vertrouwen' precies in een neoliberale massamaatschappij? Ik bedoel, toen westerse bankiers net zolang met niet-bestaand geld hadden gespeculeerd dat tenslotte in 2008 onvermijdelijk de kredietcrisis uitbrak, gaven de regeringen in Europa en de VS vele miljarden aan belastinggeld om 'het vertrouwen' in de corrupte bankiers te herstellen. En dat terwijl de  banken geen cent waren kwijt geraakt, want al dat geld had uberhaupt nooit bestaan. Vandaar dat de mainstream media de zaak moesten verdoezelen met de absurditeit dat het niet-bestaande geld was 'verdampt.' Voor het eerst in de geschiedenis was een vaste stof 'verdampt.' Hoe dit natuurkundig wonder mogelijk was geweest heeft nog geen van mijn collega's  kunnen uitleggen. Maar dit belet hen niet om elkaar, de politici en de sjoemelende bankiers met grote stelligheid na te praten. Tot zover de 'vrije westerse pers.' Ondanks deze miljardenzwendel hebben tot nu toe de westerse politici niet de moed gehad om dit onverantwoordelijk speculeren aan banden te leggen en al evenmin durven ze de belastingparadijzen voor de rijken aan te pakken. Tot zover de 'westerse democratie.' 


Welnu, waar het altijd in zwendel om draait is 'vertrouwen.' Zo lang de gedupeerde denkt dat hij niet bezwendeld wordt, kan de zwendelaar, de hustler, de opiniemaker, de politicus en zijn opdrachtgevers, gewoon doorgaan. Ons voorland is wat dat betreft de Verenigde Staten geweest, waar de moderne 'con man' in de negentiende eeuw vorm kreeg en zich tot grote hoogte heeft weten te ontwikkelen. Voorbeelden te over, van de 'zwarte' president Obama's 'Change We Can Believe In'  tot aan de miljardendfraude van de internationaal opererende investeringsbank Goldman Sachs. Het verschijnsel 'con man' werd al in de jaren tachtig van de negentiende eeuw uitgebreid beschreven door de Amerikaanse historicus Henry Adams, wiens overgrootvader en grootvader president waren geweest van de Verenigde Staten. In het hoofdstuk 'American Ideals 1800' schreef hij in zijn magistrale History of the United States of America During the Administrations of Thomas Jefferson and James Madison:

In the early days of colonization, a very new settlement represented an idea and proclaimed mission... No such character belonged to the colonization of 1800. From Lake Erie to Florida, in long, unbroken line, pioneers were at work, cutting into the forests with the energy of so many beavers, and with no more express moral purpose than the beavers they drove away. The civilization they carried with them was rarely illuminated by an idea; they sought room for no new truth, and aimed neither at creating, like the Puritans, a government of saints, nor, like the Quakers, one of love and peace... To a new society, ignorant and semi-barbarous, a mass of demagogues insisted on applying every stimulant that could inflame its worst appetites, while at the same instant taking away every influence that had hitherto helped to restrain its passions.

Greed for wealth, lust for power, yearning for the blank void of savage freedom such as Indians and wolves delighted in, -- these were the fires that flamed under the cauldron of American society, in which, as conservatives believed, the old, well-proven, conservative crust of religion, government, family, and even common respect for age, education, and experience was rapidly melting away, and was indeed already broken into fragments, swept about by the seething mass of scum ever rising in greater quantities to the surface,

En op zijn beurt schreef in 1835 een andere aristocraat, de Franse historicus Alexis de Tocqueville, in zijn beroemde Democracy in America over deze 'half-barbaarse' moderne Amerikanen:  

Under their hand, political principles, laws, and human institutions seem malleable, capable of being shaped and combined at will. As they go forward, the barriers which imprisoned society and behind which they were born are lowered; old opinions, which for centuries had been controlling the world, vanish; a course almost without limits, a field without horizon, is revealed: the human spirit rushes forward and traverses them in every direction.

Alles kon zolang men er maar mee weg kwam. Alles moest wijken voor de 'con men.' Beschaving deed er niet toe. Begeerte en machtslust waren de doorslaggevende drijfveren geworden. En zo ontstond het rijk van de 'con man,' waarbij 'con' de afkorting is van 'confidence,' het vertrouwen stellen in, of te wel, het 'geloof in iemands goede trouw en eerlijkheid.' De echte geslepen 'con man' wordt geloofd. Maar wanneer een 'kabinet zoekt' naar 'vertrouwen' dan betekent dit impliciet dat de regering uit slechte 'con men' bestaat, omdat ze geen vertrouwen meer inboezemen. En dat komt omdat de  burger intuitief aanvoelt of bewust constateert dat ze 'con men' zijn. De moderne burger heeft leren zien wat het origineel is en wat de reproductie. Dat bleek gisteren nog eens uit de 'Brief van de dag,' in dezelfde Volkskrant. De titel van die brief was 'Geef de Oranjes de reproducties,' zodat de belastingbetalende burger die nu 'de Grote Kerk in Den Haag bezoekt, 13,50 euro [betaalt] om reproducties te mogen bekijken van de Oranjezaal van Paleis Huis ten Bosch,' in de toekomst de originelen kan zien, terwijl nu alleen de Oranjes belastingvrij de originelen kunnen  bekijken. Tot voor een jaar of tien zou een dergelijke brief niet snel gepubliceerd worden, laat staan tot 'brief van de dag' zijn uitverkozen, omdat de inhoud toen als beledigend werd gezien voor ons nationale symbool, het koninklijke huis. Maar ook dat symbool gaat er nu aan, net als alle andere, van de politiek tot de journalistiek. De 'con men' moeten steeds geraffineerder worden. Later meer daarover.










vrijdag 12 april 2013

American Terrorism 3


'Gitmo prisoners treated like guinea pigs by amateur staff'



Published on Apr 11, 2013
Guantanamo hunger strike continues. RT speaks to Feroz Abbasi who spent several years at Guantanamo - two of them in solitary confinement - before being released without charge. He took part in the previous mass hunger strike there, and shared his experience.

RT LIVE http://rt.com/on-air

Capitalism


Capitalism is way to nowhere - Immortal Technique (RT EXCLUSIVE)



Published on Apr 12, 2013
Corporations 'are making too much money off of this stage of evolution, the capitalism, to stop and get off us to the next level'. The only thing that people are separated by is language and the inability to understand, that humanity has no other choice but to shift to a new economic idea doing away with devastating capitalism. But unfortunately people choose not to understand - American rapper Immortal Technique said in an interview with RT READ MORE here http://on.rt.com/efpck0



Jeff Cohen


The Consensus Behind Militarism

Friday, 12 April 2013 11:36By Jeff CohenConsortium News | Op-Ed
While the U.S. media has some spirited debate over politics and social issues – i.e. Fox News vs. MSNBC – there remains a broad consensus about foreign adversaries whose behavior is almost always cast in the harshest light, a reality that colors how America reacts to the world, as Jeff Cohen writes.

I spent years as a political pundit on mainstream TV – at CNN, Fox News and MSNBC. I was outnumbered, outshouted, red-baited and finally terminated. Inside mainstream media, I saw that major issues were not only dodged, but sometimes not even acknowledged to exist.
Today there’s an elephant in the room: a huge, yet ignored, issue that largely explains why Social Security is now on the chopping block. And why other industrialized countries have free college education and universal healthcare, but we don’t. It’s arguably our country’s biggest problem – a problem that Martin Luther King Jr. focused on before he was assassinated 45 years ago, and has only worsened since then (which was the height of the Vietnam War).
That problem is U.S. militarism and perpetual war.
In 1967, King called the United States “the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today” – and said, “A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death.”
Nowadays MSNBC hosts yell at Fox News hosts, and vice versa, about all sorts of issues – but when the Obama administration expanded the bloody war in Afghanistan, the shouting heads at both channels went almost silent. When Obama’s drone war expanded, there was little shouting. Not at MSNBC, not at Fox. Nor at CNN, CBS, ABC or so-called public broadcasting.
We can have raging debates in mainstream media about issues like gun control and gay marriage and minimum wage, but when the elites of both parties agree on military intervention – as they so often do – debate is nearly nonexistent. Anyone in the mainstream who goes out on a limb to loudly question this oversized creature in the middle of the room known as militarism or interventionism is likely to disappear faster than you can say “Phil Donahue.”
I know something about mainstream journalists being silenced for questioning bipartisan military adventures because I worked with Phil Donahue at MSNBC in 2002/03 when Bush was revving up the Iraq invasion with the support of Democratic leaders like Joe Biden, John Kerry, Hillary Clinton and Harry Reid. That’s when MSNBC terminated us for the crime of JWI. Not DWI, but JWI – Journalism duringWartime while Independent.
JWI may be a crime in mainstream media, but it’s exactly the kind of unauthorized, unofficial coverage you get from quality independent media today and from un-embedded journalists like Jeremy Scahill, Dahr Jamail and Glenn Greenwald.
Unfortunately, many liberal journalists who were vocal about war, human rights and civil liberties during the Bush era lost their  voices as Obama continued and, in some cases, expanded Bush’s “War on Terror” policies. It says something about the lack of serious national debate on so-called national security that last month one of the loudest mainstream TV news questioners of the president’s right to assassinate Americans was Sean Hannity on Fox. That’s obscene.
And it says something about mainstream TV that the toughest, most consistent questioners of militarism and defenders of civil liberties are not on a news channel – they’re on the comedy channel. A few weeks ago, I watched a passionate Jon Stewart taking on the U.S. military budget: “We already spend more on defense than the next 12 countries combined, including China, including Russia. We’re like the lady on Jerry Springer who can’t stop getting breast implants.” (On screen was a photo of the Springer guest.)
What our mainstream media so obediently call the “War on Terror” is experienced in other countries as a U.S. war OF terror – kidnappings, night raids, torture, drone strikes, killing and maiming of innocent civilians – that creates new enemies for our country. Interestingly, you can easily find that reality in mainstream media of allied countries in Europe, but not in the mainstream media of our country. Needless to say, it’s our country that’s waging this global perpetual war.
In a democracy, war must be subjected to questioning and debate. And not just on the comedy channel.

War on Health

Stan heb je gemist dat de Monsanto Protection Act is aangenomen?
Een erg boze Gary Null een tijdje geleden gezien bij de premiere van 
War On Health




Published on Jul 10, 2012
War on Health - Gary Null's documentary exposing the FDA. Posted with permission. A must-see documentary.

Learn more from Gary Null at the Progressive Radio Network: www.PRN.fm

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Geert Mak 13

In een schitterend essay over Herman Melville's boek The Confidence-Man schreef de befaamde literatuurcriticus Tony Tanner over de moderne samenleving zoals die in de VS was ontstaan:

In a society where self-authoring is as common as self-parenting -- people choose their parts then write their lines -- there is no longer any source of reliable authorisation or legitimation, no captain to give guarantees, and reference, and orders.

Het is een wereld waarin de grootste praatjesmakers en oplichters het voor het zeggen hebben. Zij bepalen de 'werkelijkheid,' dat wil zeggen hun 'werkelijkheid'.



In de uitzending van Pauw en Witteman van 3 oktober 2012 over de Amerikaanse presidentsverkiezing vroeg Witteman zijn gasten het volgende:

Waarom is de armoede niet de topic van de campagne? 

De 'Amerikadeskundige' Geert Mak reageerde onmiddellijk met de bewering dat de armoede 'onderhuids natuurlijk wel' een topic was. 'Bij Obama speelt het erg over het verdedigen van verworven rechten.' 


Geruststellend liet Mak nog weten dat de almaar breder wordende kloof tussen arm en rijk in de Verenigde Staten tijdens de tweede termijn van Obama kleiner zal worden. 
http://www.uitzendinggemist.nl/afleveringen/1293485


Opmerkelijk is dat in Nederland iemand als Geert Mak met een minimum aan kennis zich moeiteloos kan voordoen als 'Amerika-expert,' zoals hij nu door zowel Vrij Nederland als de EO, en door nagenoeg alles dat daartussen ligt, geintroduceerd wordt. Tegenover VN verklaarde Mak naar aanleiding van zijn optreden bij Pauw en Witteman als onderdeel van 'het puikje van de Nederlandse Amerika-watchers' met de nodige pendanterie: 'Jammer dat Leon de Winter er niet was, dan was het stel compleet geweest,' waarbij Mak voorts opmerkte dat De Winter's visie over de VS 'heel interessant' is, omdat hij 'conservatief Amerika' onderzoekt. 'Hij heeft volstrekt gelijk als hij zegt dat die kant in de Europese verslaggeving verwaarloosd wordt,' aldus de opiniemaker die zelf verzuimde het werk van de overgrote meerderheid van gezaghebbende Amerikaanse historici te lezen en tevens nagenoeg niets weet over de ideologische achtergronden van de Founding Fathers, en evenmin de grote Amerikaanse literatoren intensief heeft bestudeerd, zoals ik op deze weblog heb proberen aan te tonen. Zelfs Steinbeck's werk komt er bij Mak bekaaid af. En toch wordt Mak's Reizen zonder John door Vrij Nederland aangekondigd als 'een reis door de literatuur en de geschiedenis.' Ook hier is weer sprake van de nieuwe kleren van de keizer zonder dat de polder-intelligentsia het publiek erop wijst dat Mak als het ware pontificaal in zijn blote billen voorbij paradeert. Behalve van de Amerika-expert Frans Verhagen, heb ik geen serieuze inhoudelijke en gedocumenteerde kritiek op Mak's boek gelezen. Verhagen merkt terecht op dat
Geert Mak, die van dat mislukte Steinbeck boek, mag nu als getuige deskundige optreden. Of onze islamofoob Leon de Winter, rijke Los Angelo, die weet natuurlijk ook precies hoe Amerika in elkaar zit. Nou ja, het vult de week.      
http://www.amerika.nl/cms/comment.php?comment.news.906
Zo helpen ze elkaar de brug over. Vrij Nederland looft Mak en Mak looft op zijn beurt weer De Winter, die bekend staat als een fanatieke zionist met fascistoide opvattingen, zoals niet zo lang geleden weer bleek toen hij publiekelijk verklaarde: 
misschien moet in het geheim een anticonceptie middel aan het drinkwater in Gaza worden toegevoegd.
Terug naar Mak's stellige bewering dat
Bij Obama speelt het erg over het verdedigen van verworven rechten.


Nu de werkelijkheid:


ELIZABETH WARREN SHOCKED BY OBAMA CPI PROPOSAL TO SQUEEZE BLOOD OUT OF THE MIDDLE CLASS WHEN THE WEALTHY CAN SUSTAIN SOCIAL SECURITY
BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT
ageoldElizabeth Warren is defying party allegiance -- and apparent Democratic leadership acquiescence (Pelosi and Reid) -- to oppose President Obama's chained CPI downward payment adjustment to Social Security recipients in his latest budget.
According to the Huffington Post she is, well frankly, astonished:
Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) made it clear Wednesday in an email to supporters that not only would she oppose President Barack Obama's plan to cut Social Security benefits through a cost-of-living adjustment known as chained CPI, but that she was "shocked to hear" it was included in the White House's budget proposal at all.
Warren said her brother David lives on the $13,200 per year he receives in Social Security benefits. "I can almost guarantee that you know someone -- a family member, friend, or neighbor -- who counts on Social Security checks to get by," she wrote.
An excerpt from her e-mail to her followers reads:
That's why I was shocked to hear that the President's newest budget proposal would cut $100 billion in Social Security benefits. Our Social Security system is critical to protecting middle class families, and we cannot allow it to be dismantled inch by inch.
The President's policy proposal, known as "chained CPI," would re-calculate the cost of living for Social Security beneficiaries. That new number won't keep up with inflation on things like food and health care -- the basics that we need to live.
In short, "chained CPI" is just a fancy way to say "cut benefits for seniors, the permanently disabled, and orphans."
What is essential to understanding Social Security is that it is a regressive flat tax, like a retail tax.  It is the same rate for everyone regardless of income, and it is capped at $113,700.  This means that on income above that level, one doesn't have to pay Social Security tax.
As BuzzFlash at Truthout noted in its commentary on March 8, "Raise Social Security and Medicare (FICA) Taxes on the Rich, Don't Feed the Cat Food of Austerity to the Elderly," there is a solution at hand that will not turn our senior citizens into dumpster divers for food.
We noted in that column an analysis by Thomas Edsall of the New York Times (NYT):
Earned income in excess of $113,700 is entirely exempt from the 6.2 percent payroll tax that funds Social Security benefits (employers pay a matching 6.2 percent). 5.2 percent of working Americans make more than $113,700 a year.Simply by eliminating the payroll tax earnings cap — and thus ending this regressive exemption for the top 5.2 percent of earners — would, according to the Congressional Budget Office, solve the financial crisis facing the Social Security system…. [Bold and italics inserted by BuzzFlash.]
But Obama has either by his frequent maladroit negotiation -- or because he is actually a believer in the "austerity" frame of the GOP -- has not offered the option of Social Security increases for the rich.
The NYT, in an April 11 story, echoes the "conventional wisdom" that "entitlements" – which really are earned benefits – need to be cut back on working stiffs:
The president’s views put him at the head of a small but growing faction of liberals and moderate Democrats who began arguing several years ago that unless the party agrees to changes in the entitlement benefit programs — which are growing unsustainably as baby boomers age and medical prices rise — the programs’ costs will overwhelm all other domestic spending to help the poor, the working class and children.
“The math on entitlements is just not sustainable,” said Senator Mark Warner of Virginia, one of the few Democrats to unequivocally endorse Mr. Obama’s budget. “And if you’re not finding ways to reform, where do you squeeze? Well, then you squeeze early-childhood programs, you squeeze Head Start, you squeeze education and veterans.”
The answer is that you don't have to squeeze much of anything (except the Pentagon, CIA and Department of Homeland Security immigration budgets for a start).  Workers in America earn Social Security by the sweat of their brow.  Many of the very wealthy pay very little or nothing into the fund because they earn lavish profits from capital gains, which are not subject to Social Security and Medicare (FICA) taxes.  Just, as Edsall recommends, create a progressive FICA tax and eliminate the earnings cap.  And if you want to tax the massive Wall Street "sacred" capital gains profits to buttress Social Security, go at it.
BuzzFlash also wrote a commentary on March 14, "GOP and Obama Ready to Make Needy Seniors Pay for Bush Wars."
After all, it was the GOP that took a balanced budget left by Bill Clinton and ran it up trillions of dollars of debt and drove the economy into a wall. That's what has created the hypocritical GOP war cry of "austerity."
Why should a truck driver or a waitress struggle for basic needs in their senior years as a result of legislative negligence?  Not to mention that depending on who is doing the accounting, a few trillion has been "borrowed" from the Social Security Trust Fund to provide cash to help pay off the ongoing US debt.  
Obama is no longer an opponent of the trumped up "austerity" movement; he is driving the bus.
Not only that, from a political perspective, the GOP will have a field day in congressional districts in 2014 blaming the Democrats for lowering Social Security payments.
BuzzFlash at Truthout observed in its cat food commentary:
When Independent Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders delivered his fiery filibuster on income inequality and jobs in America last year, he nailed down the essence of the bellowing cries of the moneyed elite for "austerity":
The reality is, many of the nation's billionaires are on the warpath. They want more, more, more. Their greed has no end, and apparently there is very little concern for our country or for the people of this country if it gets in the way of the accumulation of more and more wealth and more and more power.
Sanders went on to make a provocative analogy:
The point that needs to be made is, when is enough enough? That is the essence of what we are talking about. Greed, in my view, is like a sickness. It is like an addiction. We know people who are on heroin. They can't stop….
How can anybody be proud to say they are a multimillionaire and are getting a huge tax break and one-quarter of the kids in this country are on food stamps? How can one be proud of that? I don't know.
It is not only income, it is wealth. The top 1 percent owns more wealth than the bottom 90 percent. During the Bush years, the wealthiest 400 Americans saw their wealth increase by some $400 billion. How much is enough?
Apparently, enough is never enough, for most millionaires and billionaires.  When success and value in a society are reduced to the monetization of one's assets, the culture has been debased to worshipping mammon.
Someone has to stop the mainlining of greed, and let it begin with progressive FICA taxation – without caps – on Social Security and Medicare.
Obama rode into office in 2008 promising systemic change in the ways of Washington; now he's offering seniors a change in eating habits: road kill.
http://truth-out.org/buzzflash/commentary/item/17911-elizabeth-warren-shocked-by-obama-cpi-proposal-to-squeeze-blood-out-of-the-middle-class-when-the-wealthy-can-sustain-social-security



Waarom kennen de Nederlandse opiniemakers geen enkel gevoel van schaamte? Waarom kan Geert Mak net als de autoriteit in het sprookje de nieuwe kleren van de keizer ongestoord in zijn blote bips voorbij paraderen? Waar zijn de niet gehersenpoelde kinderen?