Monday, December 15, 2014

Transparency through the Opaque

This latest budget 1.1 trillion buck madness bill stuffed with funds for our eternal wars and goodies for Wall Street has now somewhat transparently passed in Congress differently from its usual opaque nature, the contents of which are often hidden from the public. Eventually, we often find out when another social program or regulatory agency that worked for us has been dismembered and finally killed taking us, the 98%, with it. This time someone smart found the bank stuff out as Elizabeth Warren the Great of Massachusetts railed from the Senate floor against the stealth bombing.

Mostly Republicans (although not entirely) through corporate contributions to their war-chests, the massive minions of money intend to seize it all and eradicate, by any means necessary, those who would oppose them. Through their mendacious tactics, suppressing the minority vote and the use of gerrymandered electoral districts they will get all of it. As George Carlin in his oft-quoted-by-me "American Dream" soliloquy so accurately put it “…. they already have captured the Congress, have the courts in their back pockets, have the media that controls the news and information you get, and have most of the state legislatures and local governments.” They control it all with their legions of lobbyists filling bloated congressional coffers with unlimited amounts corporate Citizens United cash.

They defund education keeping us unquestioningly dumb, underfund regulatory agencies and anything that keeps a vigilant eye on our environment, our money and our health. Polluting oil, coal and fracing gas corporations for profit can do anything vile they want to us and get away with it. As Carlin said. “Soon they will be coming for your Social Security. And they will get that too ….”

Bank deregulation over decades brought you the Great Recession and soon you will be welcoming another. Congress approved the 1.1 trillion buck budget and at the same time took out one of the most important mandates of the Dodd/Frank bill passed after the 2007 Great Recession. Republicans continue to snow us with trickle down economic lies that really trickle up and not down. 

Dodd/Frank tried, at least somewhat, to ensure the crushed economy did not get crush again by prohibiting government bailouts to the banks if they engage in risky stock and hedge fund bets that tanked the US and the world economy in 2007 putting millions out of work, out of homes, out of health care and out of luck for years and still counting.

Our do nothing Congress finally did something. They slid this return to Wall Street deregulation under the radar into the middle of the budget bill nearly word for Wall Street word and then the good Christian hypocrites quickly got out of town for Christmas, the alleged birthday of the Prince of Peace, the nation celebrates. This move of madness by the corrupt swill that has paired money with power and has become Washington Corporate Lobbyist DC made me cringe.

The budget bill, yet again, allows banks another life at selling risky Wall Street bets to the woefully ignorant. If the bets fail not to worry you and I will pick up the tab for the multi gazillionaires while they walk away with our billions and bonuses to boot and the 98% walk away with a colossal headache.

In bipartisan fashion unheard of in our time there were many Democrats and Republicans who would not sign onto this bill but in the end it, of course, passed. The president to avoid another Republican threatened government shutdown unenthusiastically signed the horrific thing. That is what corporate money in the hands of Congress gets you – total access to unlimited power.

Add to the budget psychotic event the Republican electoral stomach turning result in November, the unjustifiable killing of unarmed Black men by white police everywhere and SCOTUS, their hearts made of unethical stone, declaring a "post racial" nation as the noxious five eviscerated the 1965 Voting Rights Act and I am temporarily yelling “uncle.” The film Network’s character, Howard Beal, said it best: “I’m mad as hell and cannot take it anymore. I'm a HUMAN BEING, God damn it! My life has VALUE! Things have got to change. But first, you've gotta get mad!”

Unlike Howard Beal, though, for the moment, I must retreat from the cacophony of music screech blowing a hole in my eardrums -- okay maybe for a day or two or three. If I do not, for those of you who watch "Newsroom," I will end up as the ethically good ACN Newsroom boss Charlie did. [Spoiler Alert] He compromised with evil to keep the company afloat and ended up flat out massive heart attack dead!

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