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Archive for 20. februar 2009

USA – Hva nå – I etterkant av den nye økonomiske krisen (NEC)

Posted by Fredsvenn den februar 20, 2009

Les: Den nye verdensorden

Krigsprofitt er hva USA begjærer. Generalmajor Smedley Butler fra Marine Corps, mannen som infiltrerte og røpte det såkalte handelskuppet i USA på 1930-tallet, skrev i 1935 i boken War is a Racket/Krig er svindelforetagende:

“Jeg gjorde så at Mexico var sikker for De forende Amerikanske stater olje interesser i 1914, Jeg gjorde så at Haiti og Cuba ble et hyggelig sted for guttene i National City Bank for å samle inn inntekter. Jeg hjalp til med voldtekt av ett halvt dusin sentral amerikanske republikker for å tjene Wall Street. Jeg hjalp med å gjøre rent i Nicuragua for Brown brødrene i International Banking House fra 1902 til 1912. Jeg åpnet Den Dominikanske Republikk for De forende Amerikanske stater sukker interesser i 1916. Jeg hjalp til med å gjøre Honduras klar for De forende Amerikanske stater frukt kompanier i 1903. I 1927 hjalp jeg Standard Oil å bli uantastet for deres fremferd i Kina.”

Butler anerkjente at han har tilbrakte mye av hans 33 år i Marine Corps som en “overklasse muskelmann for Big Buisness, Wall Street og bankene. Kort fortalt var jeg en pengeutpresser og en gangster for kapitalismen.” Derfor gjorde Butler en effektiv avsløring av en stort sett ukjent sannhet, der militæret tjener de strategiske interesser i korporasjonens former.

Listen av brudd på folkeretten og presidentenes tilrøvelser av Kongressens makt er nesten uendelig land. Saken er den at det blir stadig lettere for presidenter å gå forbi Kongressen og å erklære krig og trekke landet inn i militære eventyr på tross av at de mangler autoritet til å gjøre det når presedens først har blitt satt. USA må derfor, i den internasjonale fredens og harmoniens interesser, opprettholde en demokratisk regjering og unngå en verdenskatastrofe.

Det såkalte handelskuppet hadde som mål å velte den gryende velferdsstaten som var ved å bli etablert i USA i etterkant av den økonomiske krisen i 1929. Med den amerikanske økonomien i kanskje en enda verre form enn under den store depresjonen på 1930-tallet skulle det ikke komme som en overraskelse om at det også nå ble krevd en ”New Deal.”

New Deal var ikke et forsøk på å stimulere økonomien og generere bedring gjennom regjeringsforbruk, en ide som var lite utviklet på det tidlige 1930-tallet. Den besto heller av en ad hoc løsning eller bailout viss formål var å hjelpe forretninger i tillegg til velferdsprogrammer. Som Harvard økonom Alvin Hansen, Keynes’ ledende tidlige tilhenger i USA, forklarte i 1941 i hans Fiscal Policy and Business Cycles: For the most part, the federal government [in the New Deal era] engaged in a salvaging program and not in a program of positive expansion. The salvaging program took the form of refinancing urban and rural debt, rebuilding the weakened capital structure of the banks, and supporting railroads at or near bankruptcy… Føderalt forbruk på offentlig sektor, som nesten har blitt synonymt med New Deal i ettertidsperspektiv, ekspanderte nesten hvert år fra 1929 til 1938.

Den nye Obama administrasjonen har pekt på et stor økonomisk stimulusprogram på om lag 850 milliarder dollar over en to års periode med det til formål å heve nasjonen ut av en dyp økonomisk krise. Muligheten for dette vil bli kjærkommen for alle dem på venstresiden ettersom det er lovnader om å lette trykket på arbeiderklassen. Men det reiser samtidig en rekke spørsmål om hva innholdet i en slik New Deal i USA skulle være og om dette er svaret på den økonomiske krisen. Hvordan skal venstresiden posisjonere seg?

Editorial – No Welfare, No Work – NYTimes.com

No work, no safety net, but corporate welfare is fine

2 store problemer i Senatets stimuluspakke!

Det første er at den inkluderer 1 milliard dollar for «shovel-ready» atormvåpeninfrastruktur programmer! Det andre er at Senatets versjon inkluderer 50 milliarder dollar i skattepenger for lånegarantier for bygging av atomreaktorer og ”clean coal” verk. Ingen av disse er inkludert i Det hvite husets versjon av stimuluspakken.

11 Feb 2009 The U.S. Congress and the Obama administration reached a deal on Wednesday on a $789 billion economic ‘stimulus’ package that would mix tax cuts and new government spending to rescue the faltering U.S. economy. Senate majority leader Harry Reid told reporters negotiators had «bridged differences» between an $820 billion dollar House version of the package and an $838 billion version passed by the Senate.

The gaping divide between the nation’s political and financial capitals showed starkly Wednesday when lawmakers hammered eight of Wall Street’s most influential chief executives about how they have so far spent billions of taxpayer money. Angry Congressmen wanted to know why their constituents cannot get loans for cars, homes and businesses even though the banks received $160 billion so far to help thaw frozen credit.

The Capital Markets Subcommittee Chair, Rep. Paul Kanjorski (D-PA), tells C-Span how the world economy almost collapsed in a matter of hours. In the C-Span video, Kanjorski reports on a «tremendous draw-down of money market accounts in the United States, to the tune of $550 billion dollars.»

According to Kanjorski, this electronic transfer occurred over the period of an hour or two. «The Treasury opened its window to help. They pumped a hundred and five billion dollars into the system and quickly realized that they could not stem the tide. We were having an electronic run on the banks. They decided to close the operation, close down the money accounts, and announce a guarantee of $250,000 per account so there wouldn’t be further panic out there. And that’s what actually happened.

If they had not done that, their estimation was that by two o’clock that afternoon, five-and-a-half trillion dollars would have been drawn out of the money market system of the United States, would have collapsed the entire economy of the United States, and within 24 hours the world economy would have collapsed… It would have been the end of our economic system and our political system as we know it.»

«The crash of 2008 continues to reverberate loudly nationwide—destroying jobs, bankrupting businesses, and displacing homeowners. But already, it has damaged some places much more severely than others. On the other side of the crisis, America’s economic landscape will look very different than it does today. What fate will the coming years hold for New York, Charlotte, Detroit, Las Vegas? Will the suburbs be ineffably changed? Which cities and regions can come back strong? And which will never come back at all?»

How the Crash will Reshape America

by Richard Florida

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Posted in Økonomi, USA | Leave a Comment »

Not a Joke – Hold the New York Post Accountable

Posted by Fredsvenn den februar 20, 2009

nypost

The New York Post recently published the political cartoon shown here, depicting two white police officers standing over the carcass of a bullet-riddled chimpanzee, with the animal representing the author of the stimulus package.

The decision to run this cartoon was irresponsible at best, and hurtful and malicious at worst. It seems unthinkable that an editor of a newspaper would not understand the history of Black folks being depicted as monkeys and apes or the recent spate of death threats against President Obama. Worse, when confronted, Post editor Col Allan dismissed people’s concerns as baseless.

The Post would have us believe that the cartoon is not about Obama. But on the page just before the cartoon appears, there’s a big picture of Obama signing the stimulus bill. A reader paging through the Post would see Obama putting pen to paper, then turn the page to see this violent cartoon. The imagery is chilling.

There is a clear history in the US of racist symbolism that depicts Black people as apes or monkeys, and it came up multiple times during the presidential campaign. The nation is also in a time of increased race-based violence. In the months following President Obama’s election there has been a nationwide surge in hate crimes ranging from vandalism to assaults to arson on Black churches. There has been an unprecedented number of threats against President Obama since he was elected, with hate-based groups fantasizing about the killing of the president. Just a week ago, a man drove from Louisiana to the Capitol with a rifle, telling the police who stopped him that he had a «delivery» for the president.

In the face of intense criticism, the Post’s editor is standing by the cartoon, claiming that it’s not about Obama, has no racial undertones, and that it was simply referencing a recent incident when police shot a pet chimpanzee. But it’s impossible to believe that any newspaper editor could be ignorant enough to not understand how this cartoon evokes a history of racist symbolism, or how frightening this image feels at a time when death threats against President Obama have been on the rise.

There is no excuse for the Post to have allowed this cartoon to be printed, and even less for Editor Col Allan’s outright dismissal of legitimate concerns. But let’s be clear who’s behind the Post: Rupert Murdoch. Murdoch, the Post’s owner, is the man behind FOX News Channel. FOX has continually attacked and denigrated Black people, politicians, institutions at every opportunity, and ColorOfChange has run several campaigns to make clear how FOX poisons public debate.

I don’t expect much from Murdoch. However, with enough public pressure, we can set the stage for advertisers and subscribers to think long and hard before patronizing outlets like the Post that refuse to be held accountable.

Join us in demanding that The Post issue an apology for the decision and their callousness, and fire the editor who allowed this cartoon to go to print.

Posted in USA, Ytringsfrihet | Leave a Comment »