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Saturday, February 25, 2012

Jeb and Mitt and Newt and Bill Maher: Confessing the obvious

Jeb Bush recently said, vis-a-vis the Republican debates:
"I used to be a conservative and I watch these debates and I’m wondering, I don’t think I’ve changed, but it’s a little troubling sometimes when people are appealing to people’s fears and emotion rather than trying to get them to look over the horizon for a broader perspective and that’s kind of where we are."
Is this mere rhetoric? Is Jeb simply positioning himself as a moderate, just in case he's asked to play the "white knight" role in a brokered convention scenario?

That scenario is fanciful. So what prompted Jeb Bush to say those words?

Please don't misunderstand: I despise the Bush clan -- always have, always will. Nevertheless, I suspect that Jeb was speaking from his tiny little heart. The plutocrats have held onto power by erecting an ultra-reactionary media infrastructure which has become a national psychotoxin. Jeb seems to be saying: "The madness machine has served our interests well -- but can we still control it?"

The Republican party is now divided between religious nuts and financial predators, and neither faction cares much about preserving the union. The Jesus maniacs dream of theocracy -- and, failing that, secession. The money maniacs want to strip-mine the entire nation of its assets, just as the Russian oligarchs did when Yeltsin came to power.

There must still be a few conservatives left in this country who don't care for these outcomes.

Speaking of predation: I have, at the top of this post, embedded a video from the unlikeliest of sources. The video is called King of Bain: When Mitt Romney Came to Town. The movie was made by a group called Winning Our Future, which claims to be unaffiliated with any candidate even though they push Newt Gingrich.

I dislike Newt even more than I dislike Romney. So why should you watch a video made by transparently disguised Newt-ites?

First: This work is surprisingly hard-hitting. I doubt that the Dems will produce anything so scathing and bold during the general election. Perhaps some truly independent progressive film-makers out there will use this video as a how-to-do-it template. (With modern equipment and software, you can make a documentary like this for very little money.)

Second: The Newtians are willing to speak a message that the Dems should shout but fear to whisper: Finance capitalism isn't capitalism. Unfettered finance capitalism does not foster American industry; it eats industry alive and then spits out the bones.

Bill Maher made much the same point in one of his recent New Rules segments, embedded below.

If both Bill Maher and Newt Gingrich are willing to confess the obvious -- finance capitalism isn't capitalism -- and if even Jeb Bush is willing to admit that the right-wing agit-prop machine has spun out of control, then perhaps hope yet lives in freedom's land.

Obama helping poor people. When did that ever happen? there is no blind than the one who refuses to see, or that what they say
Well, anon -- and I wish you had used a name or nick of some sort -- you're right. Maher screwed up at the very end of his rant, when he spewed nonsense about Obama. But up until that point, Maher said exactly what needed to be said.
"Let Your Life Be a Friction to Stop the Machine"
"This Is A Must Watch Short Video"
"A brief and crucial history of the United States"
-> In case You missed it
I think financial capitalism is the quintessence of capitalism. Like all capitalism, it is evil, and it destroys everything it touches.
Perry, even Marx would have considered your statement foolish. Seriously:

My own thoughts are rather more mundane. The folks who sell pizza by the slice and drive ice cream trucks and groom dogs are all capitalists, and they do not destroy everything they touch.

Although my own pooch would rather not take a chance.
I'm glad the earlier commenter mentioned Bill Maher's further remarks re Obama. I used to be a fan of Maher, but no longer.
Did you read that in a recent stand-up performance he announced he'd donated $1 million to Obama's campaign?

He's one of the 1% - Obama will look after his interests, of course. But not ours. :-(
That WOF group has a spot running on local AM radio during the Libaugh show up here in the Alabama Triangle (Harrisburg, York, Lancaster area) of PA.

That video is a two edged sword, what happens if Mitt gets the nomination?

One other thought, that video does the same job as the charges of racism and triangulating that were lodged against Bill and Hillary by the Dil-bots at Kos only better. Think there might be some Obama money behind it?
Odd that you guys should keep harping about that one line. I may lose readers over this, but -- In 2012 (unlike 2008) I can understand voting AGAINST the Republican, even though I see little or no reason to vote FOR the Democrat.
Joseph ~~ I understand your point of view - and I'll have a tussle with myself come voting time.
I just wish Bill Maher had put his money towards helping decent left-wing congress people such as Kucinich who might be struggling to hold their seats.

Mr Mike - Are you meaning the video
"Let Your Life Be a Friction"? I've just watched it (20 mins or so) at Common Dreams. It did strike me that all blame was dished out to Republicans, leaving Dems scot-free.
You could be right about it -but in general it's a must-see piece, I think.
Kucinich's district was cut up by the GOP administration and, instead of taking on any number of Republicans, he decided to challenge an effective and experienced Democratic woman rep, Marcy Kaptur who actually lives in her district. He does not.

"strip mine the entire nation of its assets" really nails it sad to say
Anonymous ~~~ As I understand it the gerrymanering of the Republicans in Ohio has forced Kucinich to fight Kaptur - one of them will be out of a job and we lose another Democrat. DK has no option bit to fight her. The DNC should have found him another seat - but they too seemingly wouldn't mind losing one of their two decent politicians - thorns in their side no doubt - those with the public's interests at heart - only 2 - t'other isn't even a Dem (Sanders).
Anon @ 7:31

If Dennis Kucinich is in a primary against Marcy Kaptur, women should demonstrate their displeasure with the Obama-crats by giving her a decisive victory.

Twi, I was referring to the Mittens came to town video, I can see the back stabbing Obama-crats having a hand in it.
Toldedo Blade, 2-27-12:
..."During the Jan. 1-Feb. 15 reporting period, Mr. Kucinich, of Cleveland, collected $362,097, mostly from individuals. California was the state with the biggest number of contributors, and they included movie actors Warren Beatty and Annette Bening and soap opera actor Deidre Hall, who each gave $2,500..."

"...Transportation-related unions appeared to be strong for Miss Kaptur. The Boeing Political Action Committee gave $5,000, making its total for this cycle $10,000.

Unions representing teamsters, seafarers, maritime officers, airline pilots, and air-traffic controllers, as well as the CSX Corp. political action committee, all chipped in $1,000 or more. The political action committee of Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc., which builds ships for the Navy and Coast Guard, gave $5,000, bringing its total to $8,000. The Steelworkers Union and the Sheetmetal and Air Conditioning Contractors political action committees each gave $5,000..."

I don't think Joseph intended this thread to become a pro or against Kucinich thread....but anyway, this from Democratic Underground
to balance the books (as it were)

Marcy Kaptur voted to fund Bush’s wars. Dennis did not.

Marcy Kaptur voted for the Patriot Act. Dennis did not.

Marcy Kaptur supports the Keystone pipeline. Dennis does not.

Dennis has worked relentlessly for nuclear safety at Davis-Besse. Marcy Kaptur has not.

Dennis supported the Dream Act. Marcy Kaptur opposed it.

Dennis supports Marriage Equality. Marcy Kaptur opposes it.

Dennis fully supports Choice. Marcy Kaptur opposes it.

Joseph and Perry,

John Foster and Robert McChesney, authors of The Great Financial Crisis, which looks at the '08 meltdown from a Marxist p.o.v., argue that mercantilist capitalism (Joseph's pizza and ice cream capitalism) will eventually and always end up as "late-stage" monopoly capitalism, i.e. financialisation:

How to get our asses out of the financialisation pickle is the burning economic question of our times. And it doesn't help that none of our current political/economic mahatmas are willing to recognize the problem. Except perhaps, as you're suggesting Joseph, Newt Gingrich...

Marcy Kaptur cut Timmy Geithner a new one...she's a necessary voice. It's a shame she doesn't support choice, but Kucinich is a pig who continually whined about not getting to debate with the "big boys" yet who has multiple times refused to debate his women Dem primary challengers. He's a carpet-bagger who was looking for any random place to move in order to continue his little showcase career...until he gleefully decided he could unseat Marcy. People who drag out "Kucinich" as some ideal magic candidate are NO different from the Obots who ALSO have done no actual research on their hero. Go read up on the little man's political start, including the race-baiting. That is, if his more recent stringing along the 9/11 nuts and his trophy bride #3 who promotes Breatharian predator-new age cultists are not enough of a clue for you.
Really interesting premise, Joseph. I think it's going to become even more common that we will hear snippets of truth from messengers we don't care for. What a mess.
powerleeze ~~ Okay - I get it, I get it! You have no time for Kucinich! The words you choose to describe him strike me as overly intense though.

As it happens, I have no time for what Democrats in general appear to be, or to have become. Therefore I should bid y'all adieu.
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