Monday, November 22, 2010

The U.S. National Deficite or I'll pay you tomorrow for a hamburger today!


I want it!

I want it all!

I want it now!

And I don’t want to pay for it.

We constantly preach to consumers to pay off their credit cards, lay out a budget and live within their means. However, this is the antithetic of the financial program of the Republican Party. Since the time of Regan the plan has been to operate the budget at a deficit, give the money to the rich, and the rest of us will benefit by serving the needs of the rich as laborers or producers; and, in the meantime the economy will grow to counter set the deficit. Regan called it Trickledown Economics. What an insult to the common man, and yet the punters bought it. We know how much the rich and powerful care for the middle and poorer classes: Let them eat cake. We have seen over the Bush years how well tax cuts for the wealthy benefited the economy.

Ronald Regan begin his term with a tax cut that was not matched by a spending cut, resulting in the largest deficit since World War II. This has only been topped by George W. who, along with the Republican Congress, increased discretionary spending by 26% and decreased revenues with a huge tax cut for the rich, which results in our present deficit.

As of 22 Nov. 2010 at 7:43 GMT our national debt peaked at $13,804,733,376,403.78. Let’s read that off: thirteen trillion, eight hundred and four billion, seven hundred and thirty-three million, three hundred and seventy-six thousand, four hundred and three dollars and seventy eight cents. With an estimated population of 309,527,555 citizens, the debt averages out to about $44,599.37 per person. An even more horrible truth is that with Bush’s wars and the slow economic recovery the debt continues to grow at about $4,170,000,000.00 (four point one seven billion dollars a day.)

When we start talking about millions, billions and trillions the numbers are so large that people don’t really have a concept of actual size. People are so use to hearing the government talk in “trillions” that they become jaded and unconcerned.


• If you would drum your pencil on the top of your desk once-per-second, it would take you seventeen minutes to drum out one thousand beats.

• If you continued, without stop, twenty-four hours a day, it would take you twelve days to drum out a million beats.

• If you could continue, non stop, it would take you thirty-two years to drum out a billion beats.

• And if you could continue for the rest of your life, and your children’s, and your grandchildren’s… – you could drum out one trillion beats in thirty-two thousand years.

Remember the US budget deficit is over thirteen trillion dollars.

(Check out the national debt at: http:\\



Remember, the primary goal of any Senator or Congressperson is to remain in office. Fact: the politician able to spend the most money usually gets elected. So how do you stay in office? It doesn’t require a business degree to figure that if you’re good to mamma, mamma’s good to you.

All major businesses are looking for an advantage. It can be government subsidy or relaxation of environmental or labor laws that can increase the profit margin. Therefore, businesses hire lobbyist to romance the legislators with an unspoken understanding that if pro-business legislations are supported the legislator will receive financial support at election time. This whoring by politicians is the results of no term limits.

Now the fly in the ointment: Citizens United v Federal Election Commission, 130 S.Ct. 876 (2010), was the recent decision by the United States Supreme Court holding that corporate funding of independent political advertisements in candidate elections cannot be limited, under the First Amendment. In other words, corporations can now finance political ads for or against candidates with unlimited funds – they are allowed to buy any election.

As long as politicians can be bought they will legislate on the side of the money. The mega-wealthy and large corporations have usurped control of the Congress and Senate and future legislations will be on the side of war profiteering, tax cuts for the wealthy and tax loop holes for big corporations. The results will be a constant increase in the U.S. deficit and the cutting of social programs as a Republican lip service to deficit responsibility.

Doing away with pork in the U.S. budget is overtly proclaimed by both parties as a step toward financial responsibility – though each Senator and Congressperson covertly pursues all the money he or she can get for their states. A line item veto for the president is the answer to leaning down a bloated budget. (When pigs fly…)

Finally, the U.S. spends more money on its military than all other countries in the world combined.

So, in an ideal world, how would we bring fiscal order to the National budget?

1. Raise taxes to bring in more income.

2. Close the tax loop holes for corporations and the mega-wealthy – one rate for everyone – no deductions.

3. Reorganize and downsize our military.

4. Cut back on unnecessary military related expenditures.

5. Require a balanced budget.

6. Enact a line-item veto for the President.

7. Limit campaign contributions and enact term limits.

Two tears in a bucket – motherfuckit.

The Lady Chablis

Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.

Thursday, November 18, 2010



Did you ever consider that you have to pass a test to be a doctor, a lawyer, a CPA or a school teacher; but, any fool on the street can become a senator or congressperson if they can talk enough people into voting for them?

Our legislative body was set up almost two hundred and fifty years ago. Our founders believed in the rights of the individual, but they also believed that the people needed a benevolent, sage group of men to guide them. Illiteracy among the people was the norm and communication and transportation between colonies took weeks and sometimes months. Our founders were opposed to royalty but unknowingly they were creating a royal class.

Both Franklin and Jefferson realized that access to power tends to corrupt politicians and both men supported term limits for officials.

Just as Franklin and Jefferson feared, our Legislative Branch has an old-boy network which is composed of members whose primary concern in reelection. What other small group of people have the power to vote in their own pay raises, decree their own term limits (none) and lock the government into a two party system? Strom Thurman was a senator for 48 years, finally dying while still in office at age 100. Ted Kennedy was in office for 47 years. This is the type of service that locks-in and guarantees the old-boy network. A career as a Senator or Congressman is the best job in town. It is a stepping stone to power, wealth and privilege. It is a coronation to American royalty.

At present senators are elected for six year terms and representatives for two years. Their salaries range upward from $174,000 a year. There is per diem, dislocation pay, foreign travel allowance, domestic travel allowance, office expenses for two offices and allowance for aides and staffers. Legislatures vest in a retirement after five years. They get to choose civil service or government employees retirement systems and health insurance coverage. Their retirement can be up to 80% of their salaries – determined by length of service.

An eight year term limit would change this. It would attract people who desire to serve the public and are willing to make changes for the good of the people. The election to the legislative branch should offer an adequate salary and prestige, but not retirement benefits. It could benefit the people willing to commit to service by returning them to civilian life with an impressive resume. By rotating people in the Legislative Branch we could break the mindset of business as usual and oust the old white men who have controlled and manipulated our government for their own purposes for so many years. The focus would change from getting reelected to serving the people. The Catch-22 is - that the only way we could decree a term limit would be for the Legislative Branch to enact it as law – and they are not about to do that.

In the early 1990’s there was a move by some states to institute term limits for their members of Congress and the Senate. A law suite instituted by legislatures (including Tom Foley, ousted Speaker of the House) against term limits made its way to the Supreme Court. In 1995 the Court ruled term limits unconstitutional. (US Supreme Court ruled term limits unconstitutional in U.S. Term Limits, Inc. v. Thornton, 514 U.S. 779 (May 22, 1995).

Now, the only way for term limits to be instituted would be by an act of Congress. Fat chance for that…

Now let’s move on the other big lie.


As Americans we are brought up to believe that we sustain our democracy through the process of one person one vote. In the Presidential election this is an allusion: the President is elected not by popular vote but by the Electoral College (the old boy network.) It has happened, as recently as Bush that a president was elected that did not receive the majority vote of the people. How wrong is this? In this technological age tabulating the vote of the people is not rocket science. Why do we need an Electoral College if not to allow an avenue for the old-boy network to manipulate the vote?

When we, as Americans, cast our vote for a presidential candidate we are actually casting our vote for electors. Article II of the Constitution requires an Electoral College. The idea of the College was to give states with a smaller population an equal weight in Presidential elections. Also, Congress did not trust the common man to make an informed decision. Each state has one electoral vote corresponding to its number of senators and congressmen. There are five hundred and thirty eight electoral voters and two hundred and seventy are required for a win.

Major political parties may select their electors at their party convention or they may be appointed by party leaders. Here lies the problem: the electors are not required to vote as their state popular vote indicates and their collective votes do not correspond to the percentage of votes cast for each candidate. In the 2000 Presidential election Al Gore won by more than a half million popular votes but George Bush ended up elected to the presidency (with the help of the Supreme Court) by an electoral vote of 271 to 266. Who are these electors that supposedly cast our vote? Most Americans will never know.

Article II, Section I, Clause II of the Constitution states:

Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector.

Changing this system would require a Constitutional Amendment. The old white men who wield the powers in our government and political parties would loose their influence if a Popular Vote Amendment were enacted – and they control the direction of legislation in our House and Senate.

Again, a circular outcome and self-fulfilling expectation comes from a Legislative Body without term limits.

The next BLOG will deal with the selling of our government (Citizens United Ruling,) line item veto and balanced budget.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010





What do we need to turn the country around and make it what we would like to believe it is? I can give you my list. (Remember, this BLOG is all about me.)

• We need our senators and congressmen to have term limits: being a member of our legislative body should be a service to the country, not a career. No state has term limits for US Senators, as the US Supreme Court ruled such limits unconstitutional in U.S. Term Limits, Inc. v. Thornton, 514 U.S. 779 (May 22, 1995, so tomorrow is the 12th anniversary of that decision).

• We need to get rid of the Electoral College and have the people’s vote elect our president.

• We must close the loop holes that allow industry to manipulate government through lobbyist and contributions. (Citizens United Ruling)

• We need to have a fiscally responsible government: we must stop the pork by enacting a line-item veto for the president.

• We must demand the government operate within a balanced budget.

• We must rethink and reinforce the idea of free enterprise, by not subsidizing inefficient and outmoded companies.

• We need to reinvent the railroad in order to transport goods more efficiently and drastically decrease the need for inefficient and polluting semi-trucks on the highways.

• We must enact a totally green energy-policy.

• We must reorganize and down size our military.

• We must control population growth.

• We must improve the education in this country by removing it from the hands of uninformed legislators and placing it under the total control of educators.

• Finally, we must be an active member, and accountable to a world of nations.

This is a wish list; an unrealistic musing of a path toward a more perfect democracy. The reality is that the United States is not a democracy but a plutocracy: a country manipulated by corporate interest. The government proper is juxtaposed between two political parties, each vying for control. What’s good for the people is second place to securing power for the party and the personal ambitions of the legislatures. All this is fed by the wealthiest Americans and mega-corporations that funnel money into the electoral process, allowing them a major influence on legislative outcomes. Add to this a sizable sector of the population that is not bright, uninformed and easily manipulated by thirty-second commercials, loaded phrased and catch words like abortion, gays, guns, god, patriotism, the military… and you have a country locked in to system that is moving toward a place and time that we will all regret.



In future Blogs I will discuss each item listed in the above wish list.