Tag Archives: Bush

I’m Shrinking!

Yes, the middle class has been disappearing.  It started with the Reagan years when the tax code was written with breaks for specific companies.  Some corporations received huge tax breaks while others had their taxes increased.  It was described as “trickle down” economics which actually started to gush money to the top 5% of Americans.  At the same time, the middle class, ever so slightly, began to diminish.

The economy had ups and downs over the years following the Reagan bandits (Savings and Loan bailouts) while the middle class continued to lose ground.  During his presidency, George H. W. Bush made an announcement that we are now a “global economy”.

Next came NAFTA which was signed into law by President Bill Clinton.  The idea of NAFTA was born during the George H.W. Bush years and it was Ross Perot that brought the voters attention to NAFTA and “the sucking sound” of jobs leaving this country.  President Bill Clinton signed NAFTA into law and American companies began building factories in Mexico.  This creation of manufacturing jobs in Mexico gave Mexicans the opportunity to earn a living wage.  Over the years, these same corporations that provided a living wage kept lowering the wages of Mexicans to the point where jobs in Mexico are now poverty jobs in sweat shops.  This decrease in income has fueled the drug cartels and has increased violent crime along the Mexican border.  That’s a story for another time.

So far, we have special tax breaks for specific corporations and NAFTA.  Then in the year 2000, the US Supreme Court appointed the rich man’s tool as president, George W. Bush.  His appointment accelerated the loss of jobs by providing tax incentives for corporations to send jobs overseas.  How unAmerican and unpatriotic.  The Bush administration also lowered taxes for the top 5% of Americans, the very rich, while keeping taxes high for middle class Americans.  Along with two wars, the Bush tax cuts created a huge Government deficit at the expense of middle class Americans.  Since the birth of Reaganomics, the wages of the middle class have slowly declined or remained stagnant.

Here are 22 statistics proving the decline of the middle class…

#1) According to a poll taken in 2009, 61 percent of Americans “always or usually” live paycheck to paycheck, which was up from 49 percent in 2008 and 43 percent in 2007.

#2) The number of Americans with incomes below the official poverty line rose by about 15% between 2000 and 2006, and by 2008 over 30 million U.S. workers were earning less than $10 per hour.

#3) According to Harvard Magazine, 66% of the income growth between 2001 and 2007 went to the top 1% of all Americans.

#4) According to that same poll, 36 percent of Americans say that they don’t contribute anything to retirement savings.

#5) A staggering 43 percent of Americans have less than $10,000 saved up for retirement.

#6) According to one new survey, 24% of American workers say that they have postponed their planned retirement age in the past year.

#7) Over 1.4 million Americans filed for personal bankruptcy in 2009, which represented a 32 percent increase over 2008.

#8) Only the top 5 percent of U.S. households have earned enough additional income to match the rise in housing costs since 1975.

#9) For the first time in U.S. history, banks own a greater share of residential housing net worth in the United States than all individual Americans put together.

#10) In 1950, the ratio of the average executive’s paycheck to the average worker’s paycheck was about 30 to 1.  Since the year 2000, that ratio has exploded to between 300 to 500 to one.

Read more and all the supporting data here

The negative effects of the Bush years washed over from 2008 into 2009.  It took eight years to destroy our economy and it will take at least eight years if not more to repair the damage done by the Bush administration.

President Obama’s stimulus package included a reduction in taxes for 95% of Americans.  As a member of this 95% grouping, I received a tax refund this year, the first one in many years.  My taxes increased during the Reagan years and this is my first tax break since then.

Trickle down economics is a joke on the American people.  It only increases the income for the top 5% while the rest of us struggle.

One more thing about the George W. Bush years, job creation remained stagnant.  For the first time in over 20 years, there were no job increases.  As a matter of fact, by the end of the Bush years, the job losses were on the rise and at the same time, the rich continued to get richer.

What is the Republican plan for job creation?  The Republicans still stand by their “trickle down” economics theory and they insist on continuing tax breaks for the rich while at the same time providing no tax breaks for the middle class.  If given the opportunity, the Republicans would repeal the Obama tax breaks for the middle class.  Don’t be fooled by their rhetoric because Republicans don’t have the welfare of the middle class in mind when they speak.  It’s all about Wall Street, big banks and corporations with them.

Trickle down economics… how is that working for you?  It’s working for the quitter, Sarah Palin and the cult leader Glenn Beck.  It’s not working for their followers and their followers are like the Branch Davidians or Heaven’s Gate.  They will do anything that their leaders, Beck and Palin, tell them to do, just like puppets on a string.  These money machines (Beck and Palin) are only interested in increasing their income, not yours.

American Independence… As It Should Be

The other day, I drove past a house that was decorated in confederate flags.  Not one American flag was displayed on this person’s property.  It made me start to wonder why is this person still living in the United States of America.

After Christopher Columbus sailed to these shores and back, more Europeans decided that they were no longer happy living in England, France and Spain, just to name a few.  They left their homelands and ventured across the Atlantic ocean in the hopes of finding a place that better suited their ideals.

If these unpatriotic Americans, the ones flying the confederate flag which is a symbol of secession, are so unhappy, then they should do what the Europeans did 400 or more years ago, pack up and leave.  Find another country.

Happy Independence Day!

Notice all the happy faces in the crowd.  That’s because they know that George W. Bush will be out of office within 7 months.  Now that was something to celebrate!

Enough Of This

I’ve had enough of the Republicans and their lapdog media yapping about  Nancy Pelosi and what and when she was told about torture in 2002.   These Republicans and media pals have memories shorter than a worm’s.  It was Dennis Hastert (R) that was Speaker of the House in 2002 and he led the actions or better yet, led the inactions of Congress during the Bush/Cheney years.  Nancy Pelosi was not in a position of power during the Republican dominated Congress.  There was little that she could do at that time.  It was the responsibility of Dennis Hastert to speak up against torture.  Instead, Hastert and the Republicans in Congress along with their friends in the media turned their backs on the Constitution and the American people and did nothing.

Ultimately, however, the greatest horror of Hastert’s House was not confirmed by its specific failures to serve the American people who most needed a Congress to counter the malignant neglect of the Bush-Cheney administration. Rather, it was defined by the remaking of an essential legislative chamber as nothing more than an extension of the executive branch of the government. The damage to the Congress has been severe, as has been the damage to the Republic.

All this talk about Nancy Pelosi is a diversionary tactic by Republicans that are guilty of negligence.

Hastert’s House was a crude and unworkable place, where members who sought to uphold their oaths to “defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign or domestic” were held up to ridicule and forced to hold hearings on issues involving the most extreme abuses of presidential authority — lying to the Congress and the American people about matters of war and peace — in basement rooms.

So what exactly did Dennis Hastert know about torture?  When did he know it and why didn’t he do something about it?  Nothing more than Republican lies.  I’ve had enough of it.

What Did Cheney and Bush Know?

How long did they know this?  If we are to take a look at the some of the past investments (2005 to 2006) of both Dick Cheney and George W Bush, we will notice that neither of them put much faith in the Stock Market.

Cheney betting on bad news…. (from June 2006)

Vice President Dick Cheney’s financial advisers are apparently betting on a rise in inflation and interest rates and on a decline in the value of the dollar against foreign currencies. That’s the conclusion we draw after scouring the financial disclosure form released by Cheney recently.

And then this from our former President, George W. Bush…

President Bush may be bold in his public policies, but his private investments appear decidedly on the meek side. Bush and his wife, Laura, reported on their disclosure form that they held combined assets of $7.2 million to $20.9 million.

As of the end of last year, the Bushes’ two largest assets were their Texas ranch, valued at between $1 million and $5 million, and a blind trust, also valued at between $1 million and $5 million. Of course, it’s impossible to tell how the trust is invested, so it could be heavily in stocks. The White House would not make the trust’s managers available for comment.

Beyond the trust, the First Family’s investable assets are largely in super-safe Treasury notes, money market funds and bank certificates of deposit. The Bushes’ holdings in these instruments totaled between $1.7 million and $4.4 million. The president also listed a health savings account worth between $1,000 and $15,000.

So when was Cheney and Bush going to tell the American people that the Stock Market was going to go bust and that the 14,000 Stock Market was phony baloney?  NEVER… They had hoped that the crash wouldn’t happen until AFTER the 2008 general election.

As to stealing securing as many tax dollars as possible, Cheney began securing government contracts with Halliburton as early as 1992.  His influence was important in increasing income from the Defense Department.  Cheney has had a lock on the Defense Department for years and we paid little attention to it.  In the meantime, our tax dollars were and still are flying out the window and into the hands of the “Halliburtons”.

“The good Lord didn’t see fit to put oil and gas only where there are democratic regimes friendly to the United States” – Richard Cheney1

1992
Halliburton subsidiary Brown & Root is paid $9 million by the Pentagon (under Cheney’s direction as Secretary of Defense) to produce a classified report detailing how private companies (like itself) could provide logistical support for American troops in  potential war zones around the world. Shortly after this report, the Pentagon awards Brown & Root a five-year contract to provide logistics for the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers. The General Accounting Office estimates that through this contract, Brown & Root makes overall $2.2 billion in revenue in the Balkans.2
1995
Without any previous business experience, Cheney leaves the Department of Defense to become the CEO of Halliburton Co., one of the biggest oil-services companies in the world. He will be chairman of the company from 1996 to October 1998 and from February to August 2000. Under Cheney’s leadership, Halliburton moves up from 73rd to 18th on the Pentagon’s list of top contractors. The company garners $2.3 billion in U.S. government contracts, which almost doubles the $1.2 billion it earned from the government previously. Most of the contracts are granted by the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers.3 Halliburton’s overseas operations go from 51% to 68% of its revenue.
According to the Center for Public Integrity,4 under Cheney’s leadership the company also receives $1.5 billion worth of assistance from government-sponsored agencies such as OPIC (Overseas Private Investment Corporation) and the Export-Import Bank, a huge increase compared to the $100 million that the company had received in federal loans and guarantees in the five years prior to Cheney’s arrival. Years later, during the 2000 campaign in a broadcasted vice presidential candidates’debate with Joe Lieberman, Cheney asserts that “the government has absolutely nothing to do” with his financial success as chairman of Halliburton Co.5 Halliburton pleads guilty to criminal charges of violating a U.S. ban on exports to Libya by selling Col. Qaddafi six pulse neutron generators, devices that can be used to detonate nuclear weapons.6 Halliburton pays a $3.8 million penalty to settle alleged violations of the U.S. trade ban.7

The most agrevating part of Cheney’s deal is that he was planning war with Iraq as early as 1998.  No wonder the Republicans made sure that they stole the election in 2000 from Al Gore.  It was imperative that Bush get into office so that Cheney could influence Bush into invading Iraq.  It wasn’t only about oil, it was about cementing Defense Department contracts with Halliburton and it’s crooks, Kellogg Brown and Root (KBR).

2000
August: Cheney leaves his position as Halliburton’s CEO to run as Bush’s Vice President. Halliburton announces that it is giving Cheney a retirement package worth more than $33.7 million.19 Under public pressure, Cheney sells company stock worth  30 million.

October 5: In a broadcasted debate with Joe Lieberman, Cheney asserts that “the government has absolutely nothing to do” with his financial success as chairman of Halliburton Co. 20 Halliburton is by now the world’s largest diversified energy services, engineering, construction and maintenance company, with some $15 billion in revenues annually, 100,000 employees, and 7,000 customers in over 120 countries.21

2001
KBR wins a $300-million exclusive contract to supply logistics to the Navy, providing services like cooking, construction, power generation and fuel transportation.22One of Cheney’s largest projects as Vice President is to coordinate the development of a new National Energy Policy (NEPDG). According to the former climate policy adviser in the Environmental Protection Agency, who was present at the task force’s sessions, Cheney “continually pushed plans to increase […] oil supplies while paying little heed to promoting energy efficiency and clean energy sources”.23 Casting as an inevitability that by 2020, the UniteStates will need to import two-thirds of its oil, mainly from the Arabic peninsula, the NEPDG recommends “that the President make energy security a priority of our trade and foreign policy”.24

Citizens Work has documented all this thievery and lies.

And the “teabaggers” are bitching about the government deficit.  They didn’t give a rat’s behind when Cheney and Bush allowed Halliburton and KBR (Kellogg Brown and Root) to steal our hard earned money.  Suddenly, when it comes to re-investing in the American people, they object.  Stupidity is the only way to describe their outrage.

The upside of Cheney’s recent appearances on TV, is that he keeps reminding people that he is a liar and can’t be trusted.  He is the highest ranking Republican with the lowest public approval rating that is keeping himself visable.  At least Bush knows to keep a low profile.  Cheney is so self absorbed that he can’t stand not having the last word.  Well, hopefully, Cheney’s last word will put him behind bars.

The Prince of Peace

Get this… the more often a person goes to church, the more likely it is that this person will support torture.  Yeah, you heard that.

(from CNN)

WASHINGTON (CNN) — The more often Americans go to church, the more likely they are to support the torture of suspected terrorists, according to a new survey.

More than half of people who attend services at least once a week — 54 percent — said the use of torture against suspected terrorists is “often” or “sometimes” justified. Only 42 percent of people who “seldom or never” go to services agreed, according to the analysis released Wednesday by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life.

White evangelical Protestants were the religious group most likely to say torture is often or sometimes justified — more than six in 10 supported it. People unaffiliated with any religious organization were least likely to back it. Only four in 10 of them did.

No wonder these folks wear crucifixes around their necks.  They believe that Jesus had to be tortured to the point of death so that they could be saved.

The religious group most likely to say torture is never justified was Protestant denominations — such as Episcopalians, Lutherans and Presbyterians — categorized as “mainline” Protestants, in contrast to evangelicals. Just over three in 10 of them said torture is never justified. A quarter of the religiously unaffiliated said the same, compared with two in 10 white non-Hispanic Catholics and one in eight evangelicals.

Yes, the Evangelicals are teaching their children to worship former President George W. Bush, the very person whose administration ordered torture.

And Jesus wept.