Tonight will be President Obama’s third State of the Union address. The remarks afterward by Mitch Daniels and Herman Cain will undoubtedly try to cloud all issues and spread false facts.

Think Progress posted an impressive list of facts this morning, some of which outlines accomplishments by Obama. (POLITICS FACTS: The State Of The Union
By Judd Legum on Jan 24, 2012 at 11:10 am). Other items in the post point out the need for a return to more equality and building the middle class. See the article for sources linked. Here’s the list.

• Since the last SOTU, the economy has created 1.9 million private sector jobs. [Source]
• The top 1 percent take home 24 percent of the nation’s income, up from about 9 percent in 1976. [Source]
• Private sector job creation under Obama in 2011 was larger than seven out of the eight years Bush was president. [Source]
• The top 1 percent of Americans own 40 percent of our country’s wealth while the bottom 80 percent owns only 7 percent. [Source]
• Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, 2.5 million young adults gained health insurance. [Source]
• For every one job opening, there are four people looking for work. [Source]
• Last year, China spent 9 percent of its GDP on infrastructure. The U.S. spent 2.5 percent. [Source]
• 2.65 million seniors saved an average of $569 on prescriptions last year thanks to the Affordable Care Act. [Source]
• “In 2011, the United States killed Al Qaeda’s most effective propagandist, Anwar al-Awlaki; its operating chief, Atiyah Abd al-Rahman; and of course its founder, chief executive and spiritual leader, Osama bin Laden.” [Source]
• Union membership is at a 70-year low. [Source]
• Unemployment benefits have lifted 3.2 million people out of poverty. [Source]
• The United States used to have the world’s largest percentage of college graduates. We’re now #14. [Source]
• One quarter of all contributions to federal campaigns come from 0.01 percent of Americans. [Source]
• 47.8 percent of households that receive food stamps are working, because having a job is not enough to keep them out of poverty. [Source]
• In the last three years, 30 major corporations spent more on lobbying than they paid in taxes. [Source]
• 50 percent of U.S. workers make less than $26,364 per year. [Source]
• More than one in 70 homes faced foreclosure last year. [Source]
• Since 1985, the federal tax rate for the 400 wealthiest Americans dropped from 29 percent to 18 percent. [Source]

Any way you shake it, this country is struggling to gain back not only its economic footing, but its integrity as a nation. From what I have heard and seen of the Repub candidates so far, they are not promising to correct anything. Only continue the failed policies of the Bush Administration to a degree not only Bush could imagine. All backed by Corporate Money.

Obama is talking about returning this country back to its people, rather than delivering it wholesale to corporations. In other words, preserving what’s left of our democracy for everyone rather than become a corporatocracy where only the rich participate. Sometimes known as fascism.


Budget Cuts Mean More Misery. Why? Life is Cheap.

The New York Times ran an article today about Obama catpitulating to the demands of the depression makers. It made me sick.

I’ve been looking for other voices in this time of accerating chaos. They are out there: Jean Houston, a visionary and activist in Social Awareness, Barbara Max Hubbard, an expert in the human evolutionary process in these times and some others I’ll talk about in another post. There is a way out of the current shit, but it will not come from the system that has made itself so radically sick. Einstein said you can’t solve a problem using the same processes and ideas that created the problem. That’s where we are today. We as a country and culture are very ill, and we have to fire the doctors and find our own solutions, and we have to start talking about it a lot more.

This is the comment I posted as Lallen56 to the article “Obama Budget Pivots From Stimulus to Deficit Cuts.”

The cuts to education and every program that supports actual people shows me that the Republicans are pushing to make the American worker extinct. If fewer people are educated they can justify outsourcing more jobs to countries the demand less in wages but still support education. Cheap engineers, cheap attorneys, cheap computer scientists, cheap everyone.

Our lives are cheap to them and they are the ultimate Grinches. It’s a race to the bottom. I am disgusted that Obama has capitulated to this degree. My only hope now is that the Republicans so overstep their bounds that their cruel, domination agenda becomes obvious to even the most staunch TPer’s. Neither party seems up to the challenges. Maybe the solution will come from the trenches.

There are movements afoot that emphasize evolutionary possibilities. More people should know that this doomed scenario is not the only one. (See Jean Houston, Barbara Max Hubbard and others like them.)

We can do better. We can form a culture that supports those who participate, but it will mean a complete overhaul of our economic and political systems. It can be done with determination and activism toward systems that build caring communities rather than punitive surfdoms dominated and ruled by corporate overseers and cruel warmongers.

It’s time for us to grow up and be civilized. It can be done. Wake up.

What are companies good for?

Okay, I know I said no more politics, but it’s in my blood. And I said “mostly” no more.

So here’s another reply to a NY Times article about Companies: What Are They Good For? It was a discussion about two basic philosophies about corporations and their missions. One says that corps are in business only to make piles of money for the shareholders. The other says corps are free to do that but not without considering the well-being of their employees and communities. One considers only money, two considers context. It’s obvious I’m a liberal and a Democrat by now. I’ll have something more tame to write about later. Like pets or flowers or something. Stand by, I’m having too much fun.

My comment, made this morning:

I’m not an economist and even when I studied economics in college, not all of it stuck. But it does seem obvious to me that the system we have now of business existing primarily for the bottom line has questionable merit long-term.

As has been pointed out, corporations that ignored the context of their communities and employees and promote profits for only the few, have created disharmony and outright economic disaster for the many. If they won’t regulate themselves to prevent the harm to their communities and beyond, they should be regulated by outside forces to ensure they won’t destroy the very context in which they operate.

Otherwise the ultimate outcome, if taken to the extreme, would be that the only people or entities these vampire corporations can do business with are other large corporations and the very wealthy, since they will have impoverished everyone else to the extent that commerce will exist only at the top. The rest of us can rely on bartering what little we have, or upon the charities the wealthy establish to take marginal care of their desperate workforce. (After all, they have to have their quota of blood of operate.) Maintaining today’s status quo equals bleak outcome, in my view.

I obviously have little compassion for the big companies that were allowed to run wild with their schemes and outrageous profit-making at the expense of everyone else. The trends of the former administration and to some extent, this one, confirm that Lincoln’s fears were spot on, and we have truly failed the seemingly mythical American Dream.

My hope is that a new economy will rise, and I suspect that it will emerge from the fringes, but I don’t mean the Tea Party. If we as citizens can get past the tempting and destructiveness of selfishly thinking only of piles of money or destroying the government outright, we may have a chance at starting over. Companies have to be good for all of us; right now the status quo isn’t worth continuing.