Wednesday, December 26, 2012

On the Looming “Fiscal Cliff”

Cassandra was a mythical seer whose doom was to make accurate predictions no one believed.  I often feel like her,  as few believe what I think about what is happening to our country.  Here are five points to ponder,  which taken together comprise my prediction.

Point 1:  the “fiscal cliff causing a return to recession” refers to Wall Street,  not Main Street.  We on Main Street have never recovered from the recession,  it is still going on (see the lousy unemployment figures for proof).  

By the way,  that recession started (for Main Street) long before the market crash of 2009.  Main Street’s recession was initially caused by a reduction in consumer spending,  in large part due to excessive fuel prices.  (See “Iran,  Oil,  and Economies” posted 3-8-12 on this site,  for proof.)  

Most of the corporations are still sitting on piles of cash,  as they have since 2009,  which has been publicly reported,  although not widely.  The giants among them (mostly the Wall Street investment firms who caused the 2009 market crash) got to add most of the “stimulus money” to their piles of cash.  

Point 2 : we have a bunch of greedy political hacks serving the special interests who bought their offices for them,  and themselves,  instead of we who elected them.  (We keep voting for malfeasants like that in our party primaries,  so this is partly our fault!)  These idiots will continue to posture and to scheme for party advantage,  instead of coming together on the budget deal our laws require.  They will take us over that “fiscal cliff”.  [verified 1-1-13:  Senate vote on tax side only,  no House vote and with evidence of foot-dragging,  no plan from Senate on amount or timing of spending cuts][Verified further 1-6-13: Senate and House passed tax cut bill without tax reform,  and no attention to spending,  nor to debt ceiling]{1-19-13: no change to this yet:  temporary partial tax cut,  but not payroll taxes ,  thus really effecting a partial and regressive tax increase,  and nothing done on spending,  just a looming political battle over the debt limit,  which is just posturing,  nothing serious}

They will thereby cause another market drop back into the recession where the rest of us still are.  They will thereby do further enormous damage to our 401K’s,  etc.  There is a reason that Congress’s popularity rating is effectively below that of Gaddafhi’s Libya.  Please remember that next time you vote!

Point 3: on the other side of the fiscal cliff lurks higher taxes and fewer government services for all,  but this burden is laid disproportionately (to income level) upon the poor and the middle class.  This is a back-door way of foisting right-wing economic ideology upon the rest of us as de facto public policy.  It is precisely why the Tea Party-dominated GOP will not deal with Obama and the Democrats;  they will get what they want anyway.  

That ideology says tax everybody but the rich,  and cut all government spending except that given to the rich.  In this case,  those “rich” are the giant corporations that actually run this country because they bought the offices of nearly all our Congressmen and Senators,  and also most of the heads of all the bureaucracies. 

And,  the Democrats also want to go over the cliff so they can blame the Republicans for the short-term troubles it will cause.  Neither side can think beyond the next election,  and they come every 2 years.

Welcome to the corporate welfare state,  in which government’s sole effective function is to pick your pocket to maintain the corporate welfare system.  What a gravy train for them!  And we are distracted from seeing it by the political bread-and-circuses nonsense. 

Point 4:  also lurking on the other side of that “fiscal cliff” is a further downgrading of the credit rating of US government bonds,  and a first-ever government default,  the start of many.  These outcomes will not be immediate,  but they will come,  and all within about a decade or so.  

That chaos will destroy us,  but the last to fall will be the corporate giants who have benefited most from the corporate welfare state.  Being international will help cushion their fall.  No one will cushion ours.  Welcome (eventually) to the Third World,  America!  

Last point:  Unless you screw up the courage and wisdom to throw these bums out and take back your country pretty damned quickly,  this dismal prediction is your future!  You have but two choices:  do it at the ballot box,  or do it in the streets with the guns they haven’t yet taken away from you.  

My personal preference is the ballot box,  as there is far less mess to clean up afterwards.  So,  please stop voting for ideological extremists and corrupt hacks!  It is almost too late!

Cassandra has spoken (yet again). 

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