Archive for December, 2012

My thoughts for 2013 and beyond

Here’s a list of things I see as priorities (not in any particular order) for our country…

  • NATIONAL STANDARDS FOR ELECTIONS. There is an absolute need for elections in our country to be run based on a standard set of rules. We cannot continue to have whatever party happens to be in control of a given state able to tweak the election rules to favor themselves. This is totally unacceptable. We all need to vote on paper, using a common apparatus to count those paper votes. And we need to let go of the idea that we know the result immediately. We need to be able to wait a few days for a solid count.
  • RAISE THE CAP ON INCOME SUBJECT TO SOCIAL SECURITY TAXES.  The Social Security System was designed in a different age. Some changes need to be made. Simple changes that will carry it for the long term. If the Social Security tax cap were raised from the current $110,000 to $250,000 the solvency would be extended to 75 years out without reducing benefits.
  • SINGLE-PAYER, UNIVERSAL HEALTHCARE. The Healthcare reform law is a good start, but what we really need is healthcare provided to everyone based on citizenship not employment status. We need to move the burden from the employers to the Nation. This can be financed by a simple, fractional 0.5 percent tax on stock trades and financial transactions.  A lot of politicians say that insecurity is the fear that inhibits growth on our economy. Well, take medical insurance out of the for-profit sector and you will reduce the cost of medicine. Then remove the cost of medical benefits from the employer’s balance sheet and you reduce the cost and uncertainty of providing jobs.
  • A FOSSIL FUEL POLICY FOCUSED ON THE NATION NOT THE CORPORATION.  Our energy companies, many of which began as American corporations, have become international corporations. The have little if any allegiance to the country that made them possible. We need a simple rule that states “Before any energy company could export any resource produced in the United States, the needs of the United States would have to be fulfilled first.” This would be structured on a five year plan to cover current and near future resources to make the United States fossil fuel self sufficient. 
  • INVESTMENT IN OUR NATIONAL INFRASTRUCTURE.  The current defense budget of $631 Billion is provided for the defense of our nation. The 2012 budget is 6-7 times larger than the $106 billion of the military budget of China, and is more than the next twenty largest military spenders combined. Our crumbling infrastructure is a national security concern. A simple designation of 10%, or $63 Billion of the Pentagon budget to a national infrastructure bank could be used for rebuilding the critical backbone of our nation. This would be a huge boost to domestic jobs as well.

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Are you part of the Problem?

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The United States is different, all you need is money. If you have enough, you can do as you please.

In the past 48 hours, police in the U.K. and Germany have arrested senior bank executives for serious crimes. On Wednesday, Deutsche Bank offices were raided by 500 police because the CEO and CFO are under investigation for tax evasion.

Meanwhile in the U.S., the Justice Department signed a settlement with HSBC Bank on Tuesday, for its involvement in-

  • Money laundering

  • Drug smuggling

  • Providing support to terrorists.

HSBC Bank paid a trivial, half of one quarter’s profits and no executive will be criminally prosecuted.

Glen Greenwald does a heroic job covering the various layers of justice in America at this link.

Hell, the United States had a President, Vice President, Secretary of State, and Secretary of Defense all culpable of War Crimes and Eric Holder and the President looked ‘Forward’ instead of doing what should have been done.

What should we expect?


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