Spreading the Wealth Around

Under Obama, corporate profits have soared to all-time highs:

Rentiers are doing better than ever; rental income has exploded and almost doubled since the recession (bubble-watchers — this is a huge one):


Yet employment still hasn’t recovered:

Income inequality under Obama has grown at a faster-rate than under Bush or Clinton:

All that debt Obama acquired, and all the stimulus did work to redistribute wealth and income — it worked to redistribute wealth and income toward the well-connected crony capitalist groups that funded Obama into office.

Obama can talk all he likes about cutting taxes for the middle class; the data shows who Obama’s redistribution policies have overwhelmingly favoured.

Of course, leftists and statists often end up favouring the super-rich. That’s been the underlying reality of communism — politburos, bureaucrats, technocrats, party members all benefit at the expense of everyone else (in spite of all that proletarian rhetoric).

Inviting the state to carve up national income and redistribute it is an invitation to corruption, and graft. Obama talks an updated version of the old communist rhetoric about redistributing wealth to the working class — he even adopted Stalin’s slogan “forward” — yet just like Stalin the reality of his policies is more wealth for the richest and most well-connected. What a surprise.

He continued and expanded the Bush bailouts of failed companies. He reappointed Ben Bernanke, who has hovered in his helicopter above Wall Street throwing out money to the well-connected rentiers and corporations. And his stimulus package went to his own donors like Solyndra who frittered away the loans he guaranteed.

That’s been the reality of “spreading the wealth around”. When will we wake up?

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100 thoughts on “Spreading the Wealth Around

    • I was born a British subject to a nonwhite Muslim father who met and created a life with a white woman in the USA.

      But yes — criticising the great leader must mean I too am a racist in spite of the obvious similarities between my own lineage and Obama’s.

      Now if only Keith Olbermann would call me one of the worst people in the world…?

      • > well-connected crony capitalist groups

        Well that settles it. Capitalism and the Free Market and UnRegulation has been the scourge of mankind. What we really need is more government and more Socialism, and more Fascism. Capitalism caused the problem. …. right? or WRONG?!

        Change begins when we stop identifying our malaise with CAPITALISM. The problem is fractional reserve banking, interest bearing currency, and a massive corporate merger with The State… AKA FASCISM.

        Aziz, please don’t use Capitalism in your terminology because we all know that Capitalism is one of the pillars of LIBERTY.

        Ta!

        • Yeah, I suppose the better word is corporatist. Nonetheless, crony capitalist does not mean capitalist, it’s a totally and completely different thing.

        • If we had capitalism. We instead have monopolies that are government enforced. It is safe to say – scratch any monopoly and you will find the government underneath.

      • The difference between the ‘lineage’ of you and Obama is a light year away, Aziz. It’s definitely not the race, {color of our skins} that matter.. it’s the heart.. the mind, the soul. Nope, no connection at all. Muslims are Gods chosen people. Of course there is the individual choice of one, but as a nation …. they are it. Why does israelusa hate them so much? Why do whites pretend they are so superior to all colored races?? Because it is GOD they hate.. as with me.. I fight in the spirit world.. ‘they’ are the same demons who run the world.. I just see ‘them’ as they are.. without the facade. You do NOT have anything at all in common with this particular devil…. barry soetoro.

        • “muslims are god`s chosen people”???? I have always thought the jews were. Does this mean that the terroists actually have won and are now rewriTing the history?

        • Jews are God’s chosen people, if you check history Iraq is which was Assyria. The most blood thirsty people of that time. The Assyrians were the “terrorists” of Biblical times. The True God is the God of the Bible. The Alpha and Omega, He is soverign and everyone will bow to Him.

        • The understanding I get from the Koran is that Mohamed was urging his people to follow the teachings of Abraham, Moses and Jesus. At the time, this meant to become good Jews, and, according to the teachings of Abraham, Moses and Jesus, the Jews are God’s chosen people. By extension, Arabs who follow the teachings of Mohamed, and thus the teachings of Abraham, Moses and Jesus, are also God’s chosen people.

        • Who is wise, if they decide to cut the roots of the tree (the Jews) and expect the tree to grow? Muslim, catholic, protestant religions will not survive if they hate and destroy the Jews. It is like the alien arm syndrome, where a person attacks himself, but denies the arm is his. But then there are some who are humans, but hate humanity…

        • @Craig:
          Nothing is as it seems. Almost everything that is ‘told’ to us on earth is a lie. I should have clarified my comment more carefully. What I should have said, is that Iran, in particular, is a peace-loving nation.. as a whole. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is one of the most devout lover of God. I don’t care to hear from those who disagree, this is what he consistantly exemplifies. Why would GOD, the most loving entity one can imagine, love/embrace warmongers, murderers, LIARS {those who love lucifer/satan} child rapists/sodomites, everything evil, israel/jews and amerika is. God loves each of HIS people as though we were but one. To HIM, the ones who fought and died for HIM in Heaven, Rev. 12 are His most beloved.. among them, His friends, but more importantly, His beloved family. He doesn’t love nations. He loves individuals. He is the Creator of all, and the HUSBAND of ONE WIFE, and Father of her children. All the rest is immaterial. GOD hates evil, and especially the ones who killed His beloved wife and newborn baby son. People lose sight of who He is. He created man in HIS image. Do men ‘love’ nations?…. hardly. His Justice has yet to be felt..

    • What on this article was racist???? Was my version missing something that yours was not? Or perhaps you are writing between the lines without realizing it and then reading between the lines…

  1. Unless you are as old as I (84), AZIZ, you are “wise beyond your years”! As you probably also know, another factor in the distribution of wealth is that, in hard times, the poor always suffer the most.
    As to when will we wake up — it better be before November 6!

    • Hey Don, I’m flattered and honoured that someone your age would read and comment on my work. We need your generation’s wisdom and light because you lived through so much.

      I have learned from history books and others’ stories, not the reality of living through WW2, the cold war, the stagflation, etc. My mother was born on Hiroshima day. I have hardly lived through anything at all.

    • Don, please write as much as possible on this site . We really need someone with your understanding of modern history. What worries me is all the people of your age are not around to warn, advise or guide us through you experience. Thanks for visiting. I am 37 and learning every day

  2. Is it fair to use the unemployment number caused by the recession -that we haven’t recovered from yet and was not caused by obama’s policies- against the man?

    • I’m not comparing Obama with Bush or anyone else. I’m comparing Obama’s unemployment data against his rental income data and his CP data to determine who his policies are most benefiting.

  3. When central banks print capital owners (elites) are in a position to raise prices faster than wages. In the 20s in Germany some people made fortunes because they understood inflation and how it works. The 1920s Germany changed attitudes dramatically and led to the 1930s…and the rest is history.

  4. This is so heartwarming, that I think I’ll go buy a nice fat Glock, stock up on the rice, beans, vodka(for trading) and gold.
    God bless America, or rather Satan is doing fine!

    • I wasn’t planning on posting anything.. but your comment lured me..satan is in the process of his death throe… and God is doing just fine. His mysterious plan is developing as He said it would.. and ‘they’ know it. I am not interested in economics, but do enjoy reading Azizs’ Articles & comments. I do know alot about God, because He has allowed me to know. That is all I really care about anyway, and it is all that matters.. I just wanted to share an article about our oceans food supply, if anyone is interested. In case anyone ‘thinks’ and believes what this govt says is true. It is not. This is the result of years of radiation contamination, mixed with corexit, round-up, monsanto products, food modification and a myriad of other poisons. I see what our air is doing to my canaries. They let me know when they are ‘dying’ from the air, food, & water. Because I have the ‘gift’ of distance healing, Quantum Physics, I am able to treat their DNA and God heals them. I have never stated before that I am heavily pregnant with baby boys. They will never have deformities. They will be born in Heaven. Another gift, and promise of my God, to me. I am stating this because there is so much happening behind the scenes of this world, that I would encourage those who think they can ‘store’ up their foodstuffs, it won’t be necessary. God will not be judging those who belong to Him. He will be dealing with those fallen ‘angels’ again, in Rev 12., and those who follow them in their evilness.. everyone, ultimately will ‘go’ to where they want to be. There is no one more fair than God.

      http://worldtruth.tv/the-horribly-mutated-seafood-in-the-gulf-of-mexico/

      More articles on radiation etc., on rense.com if anyone is interested.

  5. I’m severely disappointed in this post. There are gross inaccuracies, logical inconsistencies, and cherry picking of data that obscures multiple factors as to why the national income share of the top 1% has risen so dramatically. More to the point, this post seems designed mostly as a political slam against Obama instead of a serious examination of the rise in income inequality and the influence of crony capitalism.

    Let’s start with a little history. The steady growth in the top 1%’s share of the national income started in the early 1980′s when Ronald Reagan was president. What did Reagan do in concert with Congress at that time? That’s right, they cut the tax rates for the highest income brackets including those for capital gains. These lower tax rates overwhelmingly benefit people in these brackets because a far greater percentage of their income comes from interest channels and capital gains derived from financial investments. By contrast, people in lower income and tax brackets derive their income primarily from labor wages as they have relative few financial investments from which they can earn a decent income from interest and/or capital gains. Their inability to derive income from investments is even more pronounced when you consider that their investment interest income and capital gains are locked away in retirement accounts such as 401(k)’s and IRA’s.

    Let’s now move to more recent history where we saw a repetition of what happened in the early 1980′s. You’ve completely and conveniently left unaddressed the massive changes in macroeconomic tax policies over the last 11 years, especially the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts pushed by George W. Bush which again cut tax rates for the top income segments and again for capital gains. The 2003 tax cut made tax rates for capital gains older than one year much more favorable relative to the tax rates for income and capital gains taken less than one year. The specific tax rates as described are listed here:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capital_gains_tax_in_the_United_States

    As highlighted before, the top 1% is by far more likely to benefit from lower tax rates for capital gains given their greater likelihood to generate income from financial investments. With the Great Recession hammering the income of lower income groups because of unemployment, wage stagnation, and slack labor hiring, the investment income bias and sharp favorability of the capital gain tax rates (especially since 2003) make it pretty easy to explain why the bulk in the national income growth would accrue massively to the top 1% since 2000.

    But leaving aside the basic metrics of why those in the top income segments are capturing an ever-growing share national income, let’s look at the logical inconsistencies in your overall argument.

    You claim, in your own words, “leftists and statists often end up favouring the super-rich”. Really?? That seems rather disingenuous given that most leftists claim that they vehemently dislike the super-rich, especially those they believe have accrued their wealth at the expense of average people. If we were to take your statement at face value, the Occupy Wall Street protesters, who are supposedly leftist and anti-capitalistic, were camping out to defend and support the top 1%. I saw no such activity – did you?

    Regarding the “politburos, bureaucrats, technocrats, party members” who supposedly benefit from the favorable connections with the “super-rich”, why then are we witnessing such a strong political conflict between the super-rich and the “politburos, bureaucrats, technocrats, party members” when according to you, they are all colluding to support each other? It’s a certainty that many of the super-rich despise Obama and the associated political technocrats and that the 2012 presidential campaign is witnessing massive spending by the 1% to defeat Obama. Your argument that these two groups are supporting each other makes no sense.

    You pointed out in the first two graphs how corporate profits and rental income have exploded under Obama. Yet, you fail to describe how either of these facts is specifically and directly related to Obama’s policies. Here you are guilty of one of the most basic logical fallacies of associating the timing of various actions i.e. Obama’s ‘distributive’ policies as the primary cause of certain outcomes, i.e. the increasing share in national income of the top 1% and by extension, the explosion of corporate profits and rental income. Are you suggesting that the Obama administration and the various bureaucrats are working closely with rentiers and corporate officers as a crony capitalist ploy? If there is such a ploy going, please describe it instead of simply tying them together chronologically. Otherwise, this argument falls completely apart when you again consider that corporate executives and rentiers are more likely to be politically conservative and work to vote Obama out of office instead of working with him.

    I find it interesting that you cite the fourth and final graphic showing how 93% of the national income growth from 2000-2010 accrued to the top 1%. I found the same graphic on page 7 of the following document titled “Striking it Richer: The Evolution of Top Incomes in the United States”: http://elsa.berkeley.edu/~saez/saez-UStopincomes-2010.pdf
    However, what you failed (forgot?) to highlight from pages 8-10 in the SAME document is how the share of national income of the top 10%, 1%, and 0.01% respectively all started climbing dramatically in 2003 which curiously enough coincides with the Bush tax cuts. Page 9 and 10 in particular show the bulk of that increase going to the top 1%. Also, there was previously significant rise in their national income share starting in the early 1980′s when Reagan was in office. Are you suggesting that Obama’s policies are retroactively responsible for the top income segments’ increasing share of the national income 5 years before he was elected? Perhaps 28 years prior?

    Let’s be brutally honest. It’s a given that politically connected people and corporations are going to game their connections to alter government laws and tax and regulatory policies to their benefit. Likewise, people in the upper echelons of government are going to leverage their connections with politically powerful groups – the wealthy, large corporations and business associations, etc. for their own personal benefit. This kind of activity has been going on long before Obama or Bush for that matter got elected. But to suggest that Obama is strongly working with politically connected crony capitalists flies in the face of political reality. Multiple groups involved in crony capitalist activities want to dump Obama. Have they benefitted under his administration? Yes to some extent from the stimulus but also because he’s been hamstrung by an obstructionist Congress who is promoting the same tax policies the crony capitalists want

    If you want to be completely honest, the crony capitalists have complete contempt for Obama, and they seek to dominate the political process even more than ever before. If you look at the data, the majority of large corporate political donations are tilted toward the Republicans whereas only the unions are heavily favorable for Obama:
    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/06/09/gop-groups-far-outpacing-democrats-in-tv-spending/
    http://www.opensecrets.org/overview/topcontribs.php

    Again, I ask a simple question – if the crony capitalists are really in bed with Obama and the bureaucrats, why are they trying so hard to get rid of them?

    The reason I’m disappointed in this post is very simple. At best, it’s a very sloppy piece of tacking together various unrelated pieces of data to assert that Obama is strongly supportive of the 1% and vice-versa when the political rhetoric and money says otherwise. At its worst, the post seems carefully crafted to paint Obama as a singularly excessive crony capitalist when their political activities clearly indicate that the 1% sees Obama conflicting with their interests. How Obama is now both a socialist and a crony capitalist is beyond me. How Aziz could post this data set and claim it’s a factual and coherent argument also escapes me.

    • > and the influence of crony capitalism.

      Isn’t Crony Capitalism an oxymoron?

      Please tell me what part of our system resembles Capitalism. Bailouts, QE1, QE Lite, QE2, Operation Twist, ZIRP, War On Terror?

    • Thornton:

      If you want a fuller explanation of the decades-long drift toward widespread income-inequality, I advise you to look at this.

      http://azizonomics.com/2012/04/19/why-the-left-misunderstands-income-inequality/

      The explanation in specific regard to how Obama’s administration has contributed to the rise in income inequality is threefold:

      1/ Fiscal policy; spending that has transferred wealth to the corporate elites
      2/ Regulatory policy; allowing and creating barriers to entry to spring up that have protected the corporate elites
      3/ Monetary policy; helicopter drops that have gone to the corporate elites.

      I have written about all of these in more detail than I care to go into in a comment reply:

      http://azizonomics.com/2012/03/27/chart-of-the-decade/
      http://azizonomics.com/2011/09/09/why-obama-is-failing/
      http://azizonomics.com/2011/09/28/the-excesses-of-crony-capitalism/
      http://azizonomics.com/2011/11/15/zombie-economics/

      Now in none of these categories is the federal executive branch solely in charge: there are bodies like the Federal Reserve, as well as local and state governments, many of which are undertaking biting austerity programs. But let’s not forget that the post-Civil War constitutional reality makes the buck stop very much at the federal level. They set the tone, and they have the ability to intervene and offset.

      You do raise a slightly interesting point about why the Wall Street banks (he’s still raising a lot of money from corporations and white collar firms) have abandoned him.

      These four years have been fantastic for the top one percent — which is the key characteristic these data show — so it seems frankly irrational for them to support anyone else. Obama has bent over for them and given them breakfast, lunch and dinner. Irrational, that is, unless a dyed-in-the-wool Wall Street figure like Romney is the alternative. They don’t just want breakfast, lunch and dinner. They want more — and they think Romney will be the man to deliver. I’m not so sure — the Obama years have given them so much, even more than the Bush years. Could Romney give them even more? Maybe. Maybe they just care about there being a tiny Overton Window, so that the choice the people get is between a corporatist who spouts a little left-wing rhetoric, and a corporatist who spouts a little right-wing rhetoric.

      • Aziz, the point I was trying to make it the same one you are now making with your later comment – that the 1% are making more money than ever is a direct result of a set of tax and policy changes that have been in place far longer than Obama’s administration. What I challenge is the notion that his administration is directly and specifically responsible for the massive increase in the top 1%’s income in recent years. The top 1% haven’t done well only in the last 4 years – their income share originally took off back in 1981, and accelerated in 2003. The game was established long before Obama came to power.

        I also think you fail to account for the role of Congress in this matter. in theory, Congress makes the laws that the administration is supposed to execute. In practice, the people in Congress are the lackeys of the crony capitalists. Lobbyists often write the content of new laws their corporate overlords want while simultaneously contributing money to the re-election of their bought Congressmen. As a result, Congress is just as guilty as a bought entity. You say the “post-Civil War constitutional reality makes the buck stop very much at the federal level.”. Keeping this in mind, the federal level by definition includes both the Congress and the presidential administration. If you’re going to attribute fault to why the 1% have been able to game the federal system, it’s a direct result of combined influence on both the Executive and Legislative branches.

        The biggest mistake Obama has made has been to continue the enforcement and administration of the same policies of his predecessors in fiscal, regulatory, and monetary policy. In this context, there is nothing distinctive about Obama compared to Bush or Clinton. You rightly point out that the 1% has done extremely well under his administration, so it seems irrational that they would dislike him. Obama has done a lot of what they want but he still gets portrayed as a socialist, America-hating anti-capitalist. On the surface, that response does look irrational but in reality, it reflects their desire to monopolize power both politically and economically. I believe that their desire for absolute control of the political and economic system is so overwhelming that they will dump anyone who doesn’t completely kowtow to their goals. This is the reason they will support Romney because it’s clear he will do everything they want.

        The reason I was disappointed in your post is based on what I saw as an incomplete and to some extent, an inaccurate attribution to Obama for the 1% doing so well when multiple players on the federal level – Bush, Clinton, Reagan, Congress – have set the stage long ago. I do not think we can realistically unravel the mess we are in by selective attributing fault to one entity i.e. the Obama administration, when we’d have to completely overhaul Congress, the Federal Reserve, even many state and local governments. The United States could elect a flat-out communist as president in 2012, and we’d the same result of the 1% raking in an ever-growing share of the nation’s income if everything else stayed the same. If you want to take down the beast, we’d have to do more than criticize Obama. And yes, as Synopticist says, things will be much worse with Romney.

        • And the reason I wrote the post was because of the gulf between his rhetoric and reality. He said he wanted to spread the wealth around, and the wealth ended up concentrating even faster than under Bush.

          I think the reason why the buck stops with Obama much more than Congress is that his election was a watershed moment, and he had two filibuster-proof majorities in Congress. He could have done almost anything, and delivered a bastardised version of Romneycare, and so the base was lost and the re-energised Republicans recaptured the House.

          I honestly don’t know if Romney or Obama is better. I don’t think there will be much difference — I think they are both economic trickle-down centrists, foreign policy neoconservatives. The only difference seems to be in rhetoric and background, which is why frustrated people on the left are happy to support Obama over Romney even if they disagree with Obama’s program, and frustrated people on the right are happy to support Romney over Obama even if they disagree with Romney’s program.

    • Thornton Prayer, it is obvious you spent a lot of time preparing this reply to Aziz, but what you failed to cover in your multitude of paragraphs and thousands of words, and justifying references, was the fact that Obama is the enemy of this country, and the enemy of “We the People”. I read everything you wrote, was impressed with your effort, but if you wanted to do something constructive for this country, don’t mount a campaign against Aziz; support him in his effort to wake up the citizens of America to the dangers of leaving that narsasisstic idiot in office.

      • Hmmm…so Obama is, in your words, ‘the enemy of this country, and the enemy of “We the People” ‘. Is this the same Obama who:
        1. Gave the order to kill Osama Bin Laden?
        2. Doubled the number of American troops in Afghanistan to fight the Taliban from 30,000 to 60,000?
        (Reference: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/afghanistan/6703226/Barack-Obama-to-announce-30000-US-troop-surge-to-Afghanistan.html)
        3. More than doubled the number of drone attacks in Pakistan to hunt down and eliminate Al Qaeda, so much so that U.S. relations with the Pakistani government are destabilizing?
        (References: a. http://www.satp.org/satporgtp/countries/pakistan/database/Droneattack.htm
        b. http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&oe=UTF8&source=embed&msa=0&msid=113923708338551641006.00047caa42cb2374421e4
        4. Increased the number of special forces and drone attacks in Yemen to stop the AQAP (Al Qaeda on the Arabian Peninsula) from establishing a foothold to launch attacks on the American homeland?
        (References:
        a. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/al-qaeda/9171946/US-drone-strikes-on-Yemen-escalate.html
        b. http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/06/yemen-war/all/
        5. Recently had the leaders of Boko Haram, a Nigerian Muslim militant group attacking and killing Nigerian Christians, designated a terrorist group by the U.S. State Department?
        (References:
        a. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-18542030
        b. http://allafrica.com/stories/201206211428.html

        With all of this evidence, are you REALLY suggesting the Obama is “the enemy of this country?”. I’m no fan of Obama, but to call him an enemy of the U.S. is totally absurd. If you truly believe Obama hates America, you really need to pay attention to what you read and believe.

        Let me close by saying the following:
        It’s bad enough that our leaders in this country stink. But what’s far worse is the fact too many people just like you take as self-evident truth something they heard without corresponding evidence and then parrot the “news’ without examining in depth what is really going on. This level of blindness is precisely why we get the leaders and government we deserve and why we keep getting exploited by the political and financial elites. The real narcissism that’s going on is your delusion that you understand what is going on when you have absolutely no clue about just how badly you are being used.

        • Military interventionism is not necessarily in the country’s best interest. If you’re dragging the United States into expensive, costly and stretching conflicts, then — whether or not you have the country’s best interests at heart — you may end up doing a lot of harm.

        • Aziz,

          The last thing I’m doing is advocating is for more military adventurism. I was against the invasion of Iraq from the very beginning and think that the U.S. is overstretched worldwide given its military engagements. I was simply challenging the meme as expressed by W.L. Long that Obama is an ‘enemy of America’. We can debate whether Obama’s military actions are harmful to America. I believe in some cases they are detrimental and in other cases, they actually do protect this country. But to suggest that Obama is actively taking steps to destroy the U.S. is ridiculous when the tangible and public evidence available screams otherwise.

          My response to him and by extension to others who repeat this notion is to break through the political delusions that are destroying our polity and our economy. It’s like we’re in this collective trance of political and ideological craziness which simply does not correlate with reality.

          Here’s a thought experiment I’d love for someone to answer. Tell me, how could Obama the “America Destroyer” somehow simultaneously manage to fool the FBI, CIA, NSA, and Department of Defense and become President of the United States? Don’t you (the colloquial you) really think that if Obama were an anti-American agent that somebody of prominance in one of these entities would have found out by now? Likewise, if Obama is an agent actively promoting the interest of the financial elite, aka the “1%”, then why are they trying so hard to defeat him? None of the assertions about Obama make any sense, yet they are deeply imbedded and widespread. And I would argue that buying into these notions is clear evidence that the elites in this country – political, social, and financial – have succeeded in keeping most people – Aziz, W.L. Long, myself, and the majority of people reading this blog – divided, blinded, and made docile by nice ideologies which do nothing to solve our problems.

        • Thornton, I must say I have to agree with the others here. Obama is doing all he can get away with to destroy the USA. You just don’t see it. It is why the progressive left is very angry at him. He is taking too long to crash the economy and have us beg to be recovered (as a socialist country). Enough has been released for years now to show that is the intented goal.

          And he is fooling everyone just like the Time Magizine Man of the Year for 1937, Hitler did. I have never seen a closer example to Hitler, another socialist, in my long life. Oh, you think it was not possible for Obama to fool us when Hitler fooled everyone while systematically killing off 11 million people? Most didn’t believe it until they saw it for ourselves. You are like that. Obama’s scams are small potatos so far.

          Obama said he wanted a civilian force equal to our military. Why? Who’s paying for it and what purpose does it serve? And if you drive the military into the dirt, it is a little easier to equal them. This is why he engages in now 5 conflicted countries without expressing the intention to win anywhere. And he doesn’t even ask Congress. By what legal authority is he doing it? Nice to have a kill list that doesn’t need outside apporval.

          Did you hear before hand about the 2 floatilias that we sent over to Afraica to help start the Arab Spring? That wasn’t grass roots either. The African countries to change leadership were all announced to fall about a year earlier. Obama is supporting the Muslum Brotherhood plain and simple. Wonder why he is weak on Israel? Study up.

          If you look up, you will soon find more drones over the USA than over the mid-east. Cameras on the streets and the ability to completely scan all electronic communications in the USA is not enough. Where Bush started it with international scanning, Obama is completing it with total scanning.

          What was so hard about deciding to kill Bin Laden? He had a long enough time to mull that over before the guy was found. Nothing new was done to find him that wasn’t already in place from Bush. A decade should be long enough to know what you would do.

          Obama bailed out those who supported him most, bankers and Wall Street. Nice exchange. Hey guys. “If I give you a trillion, is it ok if I say bad things about you? Sure, it’ll help me get reelected. I’ll just make it sound like I don’t like you, OK?” No one is accounting for all the trillions. About 80% is missing. This is why we are not being “stimulated”. Almost all the money does not come to the private sector. Even Obama’s own charts show that if he did nothing, we would have recovered by now.

          If 16 trillion debt is not enough, I guess another 10 trillion should bust us. That is Obama’s budget that everyone, even the Dems voted down 100%.

          Obama is supporting the Wall Street Protesters. Why? Because their real purpose is to run up the tab to help crash the economy. That is why when you ask the participants what they are there for, you got jibberish and scattered brain answers. But the protest start date and purpose was announced almost 2 years earlier. There is nothing “grass roots” about it. It is just a budget buster for the cities and states.

          So is the open borders and all the free stuff to illegals. Sure Obama didn’t start it, but he sure isn’t stopping it. Whatever was done before to break up the USA, Obama is doubling and trippling down on.

          Or what is the “fundamental transformation” of America all about?

          None of this progressive stuff is new. It has been planned in ever greater detail for over 100 years, including the propaganda. The only difference now is that you can look it up on the internet and find out what was done, what is to be done next week, next month and next year. They don’t even bother to hide it. Just google Frances Scott Piven to get started. Lots of references will take you to the debths of their plans until you finally arrive at U.N. Agenda 21 for the “final solution”. This time it is not to just kill all the Jews, but to reduce the earths population by 75-90%. Read what they say. Watch it happen. Then know that it is true. Don’t take my word for it. Scare your pants off yourself.

  6. I have a lot of OWS friends… and they all believe that Capitalism and the Free Market and “greed” has caused our problems. I like this article but I can’t send it to them because I believe we need more Free Market and more Capitalism.

    Just sayin…. we as a collective of libertarians need to watch our language…. let us not insinuate that “Greed” or “Fear” or “Free Market” or “Capitalism” or “Money” is our root problem. It is not.

    Our root problem is the merger of The State and Corporations coupled with a debt-based, fractional-reserve, interest bearing, State Issued, government, paper FIAT currency based on nothing more than debt.

    Let’s graduate from the term “crony-capitalism”….. call it like it is…. “an unnamed beast best described as fascism”.

    Just some thoughts late at night before going to bed…. Love your articles Aziz, I have your blog bookmarked and read it often. As well as ZH! ;)

    • If we call it fascism, we will be dismissed as a over the top. Fascism means Nazi camps etc. to most people so they would be unable to see the economic side of the label. Otherwise what you say is spot on.

  7. great artical Aziz.very informative and well written.alway’s look forward to what you have to say.people like TP like to nitpick .we all know the one party system of GOV. is just a tool for elitist to control,transfer,take whatever they want from whomever they want globaly.politician’s around the world hate true free market’s .their day’s are numbered! thank’s again for all you do.

  8. Here in the UK, the state pays rent to private landlords for housing the unemployed. This means rents are high, and of course money is being re-distributed by the State to property owning landlords, and this keeps the housing market buoyant.

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  11. Any student of economic history will most likely assert that wealth consolidation is the natural order of things. Any system can be gamed. And, as a matter of pure speculation, I would suggest that all systems are in place for EXACTLY that reason.

    Groups inherently corrupt because individuals use the power of the group for their self-interest. Our present socioeconomic system is a complex blend of a zillion laws that keep the masses distant from power.

    But, whether it is the monarch who keeps his stash sealed up in the, “counting room,” or the present day bankers whose assets are simply digital entries, it is the process of abstracting reality that allows these magicians to cast their spells.

    Just as labor-value is abstracted into its money-from [which allows most of the fun and games (inflation, taxes, fees, levies, outright stealing, etc.) to occur], political power is governed by the same process.

    When you can sell what we enjoy in the U.S. as, “representative government,” then the rest follows naturally; after all, how many among us would be able to resist the temptation?

    Apparently, not so many.

  12. This article is a little unfair, because Obama hasn’t been able to reform the US tax system thanks to republican inspired gridlock. The economy is basically Bush’s economy, with Obama’s stimulus.
    Having said that,he re-appointed most of Bushs’ economic team, and Both John Corzine and Jamie Dimon have been mooted at one time or another as his next treassury secretatry. In European terms, ( and Australia,Canadian, Japanese etc),Obama is economically on the right. However, he mildly criticised Wall Street and cheekilliy suggested raising taxes on millionaires to levels last seen a decade ago, so in the US he’s a raging commie.

    And yes,Romney will be much, much worse.

    • Two years of a double filibuster-proof majority coupled with massive public good will, Syn. He had a mandate as strong, I think, as Attlee. And his signature legislation? A bastardised version of Romneycare.

      Blaming Republicans, I think, is a dead game. If he’d forced a hope and change centre-left agenda, and had people really liked it and been on board (the appetite was there) he wouldn’t be dealing with an obstructive Republican House in the second half of his term. That signifies one thing to me: the agenda in the first half of his term didn’t match up to people’s expectations.

      • Yeah, he was a complete pussy, and i’m not condoning his actions, but the reps were using suicide bomber tactics on him, and he mistakedly thought he could get a degree of sense out of them. Hilary would have done a far better job, she was always the more ballsy ( and centre-left) of the candidates.
        He was crippled by his failure to walk on water, as many of his supporters thought he’d promised them. He ran as a would-be consenual, drone bombing, non trades union-backed black man who gave good speeches and had an ambitous health plan. Thats pretty well how he’s governed.
        I never thought he’s amount to much as a pres, but I didn’t forsee the reps being quite as hardcore as they’ve been, and I’m shocked by how much he’s bent over for Wall Street, and just how ungrateful they’ve been in return.

        • I’m not sure — ultimately Bill Clinton represented the same global corporate interests, I think, as the rest of the establishment, and Hillary would have represented the same thing, the same interests as Obama. The only advantage under Hillary is she isn’t such an energising, dynamic speaker, and so might have to work harder on policy to keep the Democratic base happy.

          Anyway, I hate dynastic politics (for reasons I explained when I was bludgeoning Rand Paul) and I don’t use the word hate often.

        • Maybe, we’ll never know, but she was closer to the unions, and she certainly wouldn’t have appointed Summers. Totally agree with you on dynastic politics though.
          There’s a big difference between sucking up to the banks, as Bill and Gordon Brown did, BEFORE 2008, and still sucking afterwards.

        • I really need to do a post on Gordon Brown (I see him very much like the British Greenspan) because I think understanding his failings is absolutely crucial to moving forward in economics.

          The end of boom and bust is something that many, many planners, ideologues and policy-makers have aspired to, and it’s always come down onto their heads. But it’s even more stunning that Brown’s economic policies were formulated around co-operation with oligarchs and corporations. That — by public-private co-operation, and with government-City co-operation — that something as fundamental as the business cycle could be abolished.

          And the really awful thing is that this “easy money to prolong the boom” strategy was damned most convincingly by John Maynard Keynes, the very man who Gordon Brown claims to have taken inspiration from.

        • Brown was convinced of the genius of Alan Greenspan, and he used to proceeds from the City to fund social democracy. It looked like it was working for a while. Who saw it coming? Taleb, Steve Keen, a handfulof others. And some old communists, who’d been predicitng it every year since the seventies.

          On balance he did a pretty good job as chancellor I think. He swerved the 2001 reccesion neatly, we has the 2nd highest economic growth of the G8 countries. My cousin lives in Germany, and she felt we were richer than them during the last decade. Not sure if we’ll ever get that feeling back.
          He got a bit drunk with it all in around 2005, when he should have paid down debt, but, I’ll say this as a guy a decade plus older than you, you honestly may not realise just how shit public services were in the nineties. Schools were decrepid, hospitals tatty, there were police no-go areas in every large town and city. You could easilly wait 8 hours in an A and E, to see a junior doctor who was 3/4 of his way through a 36 hour shift. Literally.

        • I went through the state school system in the 90s, so I remember very well. In my (admittedly very subjective) experience my school actually started to get worse around 2002. There was a lot of entrenched poverty (council houses, drugs, gangs, etc) in the area I grew up in, and around 2002 (the Afghan war) a lot of people started getting hooked on heroin.

          There were no-go areas when Labour left office, too. I used to live in South London, and East London, and West London and believe me there were areas-galore I would avoid so as not to get accosted by people who would wanna mug me.

          As for the health service, I’ve probably ended up in A&E a few times, and I don’t really remember it being significantly worse when I was younger under Major, but this is again very subjective and applicable only to the hospitals I have been to. In fact my worst experiences of dirty hospitals and long waits were under Brown, (though this is because these were very inner-city), and my best experiences of hospitals was when a family member was hospitalised last year after a fall (provincial).

          As for dodging the 2001 recession, we did it on a cloud of easy money and rehypothecation that stoked us up for 2008. It wasn’t like Brown’s policies went wrong in the last few years, it’s that the easy money financialising policies were totally misguided from the start, in my honest opinion. Germany was building up a bed of technical, manufacturing and high-skill strength during those years your sister felt “poorer”. We Brits were frittering away our inheritances.

      • Aziz, you are a very smart person for your years and I like how you do not let emotions block your view. I am another of those old guys from back when things were a little clearer. There are a lot of misinformed people in the world and many of those who post here show that. We have a very bad press these days, intentionally misinforming people and spreading prejudice and hatred to divide us. I give them less than 10% accuracy and you rate much of the missing 90%. Please keep it up. Someone has to buck the trend.

        I wish we would look at things as if we had no government at present, and everyone kept 100% of what they made. Then each person told what they think a government should do to improve on that. Compare to an ideal instead of trying to compare to the mess we have. It would be a much better goal to aim for, and would highlight the problems in our thinking better. For example, statists could not stand it if everyone kept what they earned and would keep saying so. They really believe that governments must sieze at gunpoint, ie tax and remove, the money for redistribution. This is why we have a progressive tax, and still it is not enough. It never will be enough.

        In my psychology studies I learned that there is probably no better measure of sanity or insanity than how someone defines “fair”. Social justice and redistribution goals are great indicators of very troubled minds. Such people should never be put into postions of responsibility. In the 20th centuary, they were responsibility for some 200 million deaths and that is not enough for them. Their goals are much worse than that for this centuary, and they truely beliave that is fair.

        Theorists are people who believe in their theory so strongly that, when their theory conflicts with reality, they chose to alter reality. It is an ego thing. They do not chose to allow their theories to be corrected by experience, theirs or history’s. They rewrite history, rewrite laws, redifine and rename whatever makes it look like their theory works. This is Obama and who he has chosen to surround himself with.

        We should not let the bad guys define things. The top 1% are not the same people from year to year. 80% are new in their lifetimes and replace those who fail and fall out. It is a significant turnover, much more than the bumper sticker WS people claim. This is the great think about the US that they do not want you to know. The door is more open in this country than in any other for you to make it to the 1%. The WS people do not offer a better alternative.

        There are a lot of characters in this play. Obama was groomed for his job and is only the front man, not the man in charge. Neither he or congress writes this stuff. Obama has no clue about economics, other than the basics of Marxism, which has always been proven faulty. Obama did not start this, but he did double and tripple down on the errors that proceeded him. Here the Republicians are just inept whipping boys for the left.

        Obama’s own figures showed that if he did nothing, we would have recovered by now. it is normal for a free market to recover in about 2 years. Government intervention usually prevents that and so it was with FDR. When the world recovered in 2 years, FDR was able to prevent the recovery until after his death. WW-II did not bring us out of it. The recovery occured after the war and more significantly, after FDR. The rest is propaganda. For Obama, his efforts prevented the recovery and greatly added on to the debt. His is an application of the broken window falasy in economics.

        We should not blame an organization but the corruption that is in it. We do not throw people out as bad if they get cancer. Instead we fight the cancer. Likewise it is not the religion, or the party, or the country that is bad, but the corruption within. Both parties are corrupted, but the Democrats almost completely, whereas the Republicians offer only a flicker of hope. Same with Christians, Jews or Muslums. Fight the corruption, not the host.

        As for the election, I do not have a horse in this race. The economy will crash much worse than the Great Depression. We are much more dependent now than before. Obama filled the position of the last one who could prevent that, and he made it much worse. Everywhere in the world it is socialism that is failing, and Obama, like Europe, is just throwing gas on the fire. If Romney wins, he would have to wake up fast to improve anything. He can not prevent the crash, only soften it and reduce the time of recovery. If Obama wins, we are totally toast. It is a choice of a bad crash, or a worse crash with communism to follow.

        • Kurt… I’m enjoying the far more than usual ‘content’ and less noisy tone on this board. Some comments following your structure:

          1-Misinforming. Definitionally and literally, this term joins deception and/or ignorance with information. And in our imperfections we’ll never ‘get over it’. Yet, like the parable of the wheat and tares, it is a continuing dynamic field in which the essential choice is to continue the search for Truth … or the more popular ye olde human game of who’s to blame. I wonder if “buck the trend” is what you mean. Isn’t that like saying, “everybody does it, let’s move on” …when each doing of misinforming, illustrates the pandemic deceptive fallacy of “just move on”? Yet the opportunity for each and all of us …howsoever we keep polluting …to choose that ‘road less traveled’ …remains. This is not natural… it’s supernatural. And it is not possessed or done …it is a continuing gift to all and each individual.

          2-”Compare to an ideal”. Exactly. Today we are sincerely reliving that last verse in Judges…so feeling it’s FORWARD, progress, passionate, dreaming, fair… ‘all the usual suspects’. Yet it’s a simple rational concept. To measure, does one use a ruler [a set of unchanging standards in common] or how i feel about it to compare & contrast content and intent? And on what Authority does a person choose his… ruler? A universal process already exists …a dry component of which is ‘logic’. Logic is simple … and the legion of continuing names and masks for, and ‘professors’ of, logical fallacies, suggests that all ‘traditions of men’ are but egotistical games by any name. Simply, ‘human nature’. But be cause that’s our default position [dry humor for the Brits here?], does not diminish the continuing opportunity to turn toward [not Forward] The Truth. Not that we don’t try…out of sheer ‘caring and sharing’, to help ‘the lesser people’ than Moi, le Roi.

          So, “bucking the trend” – or any generality or groupthink – distracts from the individual freedom we are all continually given. What better way to express our continuing denial and abuse of self-evident Truth than the silly rationalization for the thousands of federal pogroms that each one is to “raise awareness”? Even Science includes “sentience” in its humble definition of homo sapiens as …uh …’on top’. How does one raise what one is continually being given with every breath of life we …take? Exercise it? Yes. Explore? Yes. “Raise”? hmmm. Does the inferior ‘raise’ what the superior has given? Only in… my dreams? LOL

          “I wish we would”. Uh…ya think? Rather, how does an individual seek like-minded individuals while each keeps seeking and choosing to identify, discuss, and solve new names for the same old human problems largely arising from… human nature?

          Kurt, re your reference to psychology – what do you think of the Johari Window as a vehicle to discuss human nature and, basic issues and relationships?

        • Agree Aziz. We’ve got a donkey and an elephant, both members of the same zoo. Not an honest horse to run this race. Romney, even if perfect for the job, can’t stop the collapse.

          I think that few in government, Romney included, know how close to the edge we already are, or how bad it will be. The debt has gone beyond our ability to pay and a lot of people are expecting to receive the money. When they do not get it, TSHTF. Last summer’s debt ceiling was about $7,200 more taxes for every man, woman, and child in the country. About $29,000 more taxes for a family of 4. And that was only one increase to last a short time. It was better rejected.

          The debt clock shows that each taxpayer owes $1,048,958 in taxes. I am a bit short. Some blogger wrote recently that if W, Buffet just gave us all a million dollars, we would be ok. That is a typical half truth. Sure we would be ok, if Buffet had that much money, but all the rich guys together don’t have it. Not even close. And neither Buffet or any of the others owe it to us.

          If you can not prove in court that someone. by name, owes you a certain amount of money legally, by what means to you think that they owe it to you through government collected taxes, other than by your theft?

          The soft crash is inflation through money printing, which destroys all savings. We are doing that now. That only lasts as long as people have faith in the fiat money and buy bonds. When bond buyers know they are gonna lose, buying stops. No more money is available to pay. Then only collected money can pay the bills, and that pays only 60%. Even doubling taxes now can’t balance Obama’s spending.

          Enough money has been printed in the last 4 years to lower the value of the dollar to $0.17. It will take $6 to buy what 1 dollar did 4 years ago. Why has that not happened already? Because the velocity of money is so low. All that money that banks and businesses are holding. All that money in the hands of bond holders. When all that is released to the market, the dollar will die. $12 gas. $18 Happy Meal. Things that require loans will deflate because there will not be loans. Things bought with cash will go up by 6 times, unless there is more printing. More debt ceiling raises and more quantitative easing equals a worse crash. That is almost certain to happen.

          Banks will close. ATM’s will be empty. Checks will not be able to be cashed. Credit cards are no good. What you have at home will be all you own. Government programs will go unfunded. What they do pay you will be worth 1/6th or less. People will starve. This is what happened in Russia in the ’90′s. You didn’t get the memo? Perhaps our press didn’t tell you then and is not telling you now? It has happened to 24 countries in recent times. We didn’t get the vaccination, so we are not immune.

          For several years now we have been involved in the greatest transfer of wealth in human history. All arguments about taxes and wealth redistribution do not apply. This is intentional. It is the UN Agenda 21, one world socialist government takeover almost now complete. If Obama keeps his seat, the new dark ages is upon us. Obama is a UN, not a US man. Ronmey may be in on it too. Don’t know. If he isn’t, that or a miracle is our only chance. The miracle is the better bet.

        • Hello Buck68, It is great to hear from you. I must say I am more comfortable in this “room” than I have been in other chats for a long time. Unfortunately I do not have all the time I would like to stay.

          By bucking the trend, I meant that Aziz, and maybe some of us here too, might try to think things all the way through to the truth, and not take the easy road to the emotional results.

          I find that there are several problems in psychology. One is that too many people go into psychology searching for what they do not want to find. In other words, it attracts nut cases who then reject what psychology teaches. The other problem is that to get a PHD, one must take what could be simple, and carve out a corner of their own, making the subject overly complicated. It would serve us all better to know the big picture of psychology, then watch how all the little pieces fall into place. Unfortunately these 2 problems push students into such details as to never see the big picture. Nut case professors don’t teach it because they don’t accept it, and students are looking for the details to call their own.

          I can explain the big picture in about 30 minutes, or 16 pages. Once you got that, everything else is much easier. Too hard to do here though.

          In keeping to the subject, we are watching the results of codependent people taking power. 2 basic groups are in action together. Those who are character disordered and reject personal responsibility. And those who are neurotic and desperately want to take on the responsibilities of others to prove their own self worth. You get the “I can’t” with the, “save the weeds, save the wolves, save the whales, SAVE THE WORLD!” people, both of whom expect the government to play the role as parent. Both reject personal responsibility as the answer. Character disordered people what to remain children. Neurotic want to parent everyone. There are no adults in the room. It is highly destructive and we are in for a very bad time. They are highly motivated, driven by their illness. They do not understand healthy people. Their definition of “fair” is criminal. They are conservative and liberal.

          Only about 18.5% of grown ups are mentally healthy adults. None of these are liberals by today’s definition of liberal. No good answers will come from the Democrats. Few chances from the Republicans. More likely only a healthy, conservative, libertarian would get us back to a free, rational, and healthy society. We will only select one when all else fails.

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  18. “There were no-go areas when Labour left office, too. I used to live in South London, and East London, and West London and believe me there were areas-galore I would avoid so as not to get accosted by people who would wanna mug me.”

    POLICE no-go areas I mean. Places where coppers wouldn’t venture after dark. They’d turn up at 7am if someone got stabbed at midnight.

    The worst thing GB did was continue to let British industry get squeezed into extinction. But, as Adam Smith said, your find your speciality,and you stick with it.
    Unfortunatelly, we’ve specialised in financial shennanigans for a half century,and all our best brains,our hardest workers,our inventors and engineers, wen’t into the city. Financial services, and oil, meant sterling was significantly stronger than it would otherwise have been, which shafted industry even more. Plus it encouraged chronic short-termism.

    • Ricardian equivalence is at best only valid in the short-to-medium term. And it seems to become especially invalid when the specialisation is being incentivised by government, rather than emerging organically out of people’s true economic preferences.

      There is value in the concept of autarky (or at least having some safeguards) though mainstream economists will shout NORTH KOREA and HITLER at me when I raise the subject.

  19. Open question to anyone who knows… How much is $200 in British pounds? I never was good at conversion…. first one who answers wins….. :}
    Thank you for your help… Joyce

  20. If one billionaire gave his wealth away to one thousand people who live on a dollar a day they would be millionaires. If they gave away their wealth to another thousand each, then i could honestly say that the economy in the third world would be probably pick up.

    • Let me clarify. If a billionaire had his money taxed at 100 per cent aka revolution, then we can see who can build their wealth through intelligence and hard work.

      We need a reset.

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  22. Mobarak alone is reported to have over 70 billion in assests. If all the worlds leaders hadn’t stolen, cheated and lied to amass their billions, there wouldn’t be a need for earth., hell. We would all still be in HEAVEN.

  23. Based on several thousand years of human experience, I believe that people need to realize that, “social-man,” is more of an romantic notion than a practical concept. If people believe that more than a handful of individuals can subordinate their self-interest, then they are truly delusional.

    In the social sphere, it would make sense that you must assume that people are going to use the power of the group for their own interests, and create institutions that also assume the same. It should be obvious to all that practically no individual is capable of withstanding the pressure to feed his/her natural self-interests.

    The delusion is particularly acute when you examine my home state of California where I enjoy having my U.S. Senator representing me and 19M of my closest friends. This makes a complete mockery out of the idea of representative government.

    • They represent those who pay enough to catch the attention of his admin staff or himself at fancy dinner meetings and fundraisers. There has to be limits on political donations, especially unions and corporations.

      Then we’ll have real wealth distribution. Untill then, it is obvious that the wealthy will ensure that democratic mob rule is kept in ckeck.

      I don’t support socialist revolution where all property is seized but i do think there should be wealth limits, because an unhealthy weighting towards a few oligarchs means the economy grinds to a halt.

  24. Gregory A. Jones:
    ” You are a fucking idiot. I am white and do not at all believe the crap you spew.”… and you, sir, are entitled to your intelligent and polite ‘opinions’. I’m sure alot of time, interest and research went into your sophisticated remark. Perhaps you should refrain from shouting from the internet that you are ‘white’.. it shows… what do you ‘white’ folk call that sort of language??? ahhhhh yes… redneck I do believe.. are you also a zionist? One who believes that Gaza/Palestines/Muslims should be ‘murdered’? Anger management is a course you should look into.

    Time tells all things…. classy dude… time tells all things.

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  26. William: “muslims are god`s chosen people”???? I have always thought the jews were. Does this mean that the terroists actually have won and are now rewriTing the history?”

    You are believing the ‘religious’ version… the fake story.. can’t you tell it is such a lie.. of course the cult of jesus is the ‘worlds’ version of god… he forgives everyone.. look at all the heavy gold crosses that murderers, thieves, pedifiles, etc… wear.. just ask anyone.. he’ll forgive it all.. no.. GOD … the TRUE GOD OF JUDGEMENT hates zionists/and israel-usa…Pray tell why the God of TRUTH would love liars? Murderers? Sodomizers? EVIL in all they represent??? You HAVE been reading the non holy book that satan and his evil minions RE-WROTE… just a bit late in discovering the truth.. but most of mankind doesn’t want to know truth… it’s a dead planet..with dead/no souls.. no ones cares anymore… least of all ME. I hope God moves today… the sooner the better.. empty zoot suits.. that describes what is left of those on earth who DON’T belong to GOD.

  27. @none12 – I think I can concur with your comment. Capitalism is not perfect but neither is Marxism or communism.

    • All systems of government are flawed. The question we must begin with is which is least flawed, in terms of outcomes and in terms of how we get there.

      • Aziz, you wrote “All systems of government are flawed. The question we must begin with is which is least flawed, in terms of outcomes and in terms of how we get there.”

        I agree [which adds no merit] that there is a “question we must begin with”. Upon our willingness and ability to keep seeking about that question we must begin with… rests the purpose and passion of my life, individuals’ lives, human life, and… life.

        [non-gratuitous comment]. In my internet experience, your website is comparatively, so far, an island of discussion in the sea of ‘all the usual suspects’.

  28. @ all poster’s! , mankind is the problem!!! ,unless and until the “CREATOR” of it all takes back over this world mankind is headed over the proverbial cliff !!! , check out the evidence !!!

  29. Smokey, …[delayed reply to your comment to me]

    Smokey, I noticed the comparatively reasonable tone on aziz’s board/blog. For me, has it been 15 years trying to find the proverbial reasonable public forum? Yes. I am going more and more to my website to hash and thrash about “the search for Truth”. It seems a serious discussion on another’s site, either degenerates or dominates. It would seem reasonable and courteous, therefore, to ‘when in Rome’, let the Roman suggest the agenda and ‘moderate’, ie walk his talk. I’ll have to learn how to use forms of LINKing to connect to my website, to invite others to discuss at length.

    Enjoyed your tour de force through psychology. In my attempts to simplify and include… I’ve reached the term “human nature” as a base description, value, and relationship. A sort of plebian, everyman version of the ‘educated’ ergo patrician term ‘psychology’. I’d enjoy the opportunity to compare & contrast your 16 page “big picture” with one I put together some years ago – as part of an inclusive methodology to walk our talk of ‘the search’. It sounds roughly like the First Major Premise of the base Syllogism within which to test conclusions by fitting in various minor premises…?

    And, why I asked if anyone was familiar with the Johari Window, which addresses the issue of perception vs reality for imperfect people.

    http://www.flawedspecies.com Pick a post or a topic of your choice, at your leisure, or, as Solomon put it, “before the silver chord is broken” and all that remains is “vanity”.

    Meanwhile, on aziz’s website here, i’ll follow his topical lead.

  30. I subscribed to Stansberry to get economic advice, not political bashing of Obama. I am tired of it after only a few weeks. Plan to unsubscribe.

    • Ryder, if you seek economic advice, look for… economic advice? ;-{)}

      It’s only human nature to deceive and entice for myway. Naturally, who ever tires of myway? And who does NOT tire of… yourway?

      Unsubscribing does not take a “plan”. Critical thinking takes [rational] planning… but first, willpower to set and follow a standard. Absent a reliable standard, who can compare or contrast? Example: isn’t logic simple… compared to the legion of logical fallacies?

      Have you ever heard of the Parable of the Wheat and Tares? Might be an interesting read….

    • Ryder….From my point of view, your comment about “Obama bashing” just indicates that you are as much anti-American as your president. Get your head out of the sand so that you can see what this person is doing to America, not that you care. You would be a lot better off to stay with Stansberry and believe what is said there, about your president, and investments. Wake up!

      • Thank you Alive@73, for reminding me of what i already know [but need reminding, especially when i don't like being reminded].

        My problem is “my point of view”. It’s jest a tad…biased by… the fairest, nicest, goodest man ever, just doing the best he can, having to do what’s best for him, only being human, etc etc.

        I’m so sure everyone is reading this with rapt attention… because I’m ever so humble… only being the tiniest bit better than… everyone else in MySpace. ;-{)}

        Totally, honestly, actually, really [ THAR ] ….

        • Hey Buck…So you know…..I am not stupid; nor am I ignorant (not implying that you said that, or that you implied that…really don’t know). I say these things because I didn’t and don’t understand what you said when you replied to my comment; “from my point of view”. I’ve read several of your comments, and have yet to have a good understanding of anything you’ve written….don’t recall ever being exposed to anyone who thinks like you, or who expresses themselves as you do…possibly this is your intent, and possibly I just complimented you….again, I don’t know. I am curious though…..have you had feedback like this before? Incidently, I am amused, impressed, though perplexed, with your thought processes, and the way you speak…..keep it up…I will read, and strive to understand.

          Please take the time to explain, in terms I might understand, what you mean by the comments below.

          “My problem is “my point of view”. It’s jest a tad…biased by… the fairest, nicest, goodest man ever, just doing the best he can, having to do what’s best for him, only being human, etc etc.

          I’m so sure everyone is reading this with rapt attention… because I’m ever so humble… only being the tiniest bit better than… everyone else in MySpace. ;-{)}

          Totally, honestly, actually, really [ THAR ] ….”

        • Since this is Aziz’ forum, one reply and then let’s go elsewhere if you wish to continue.

          Taking the simplest request first: yes, many people say they don’t understand me. Then, most respond as if i had attacked them. Which, of course, is illogical. If I say I don’t understand, then why presume and act as if I am being attacked? Your response suggests to me you felt that too… yet chose to continue to try to understand. THAT… is unusual; in my experience, rare in this Age of Stimulus/Response.

          What do i mean? First, I literally say what i mean. And, i try to speak for myself, not another. My problem is my point of view. What IS my point of view? Rationally, biased wavering standards selectively applied by a person with an inherent conflict of interest. ;-{)} I look for a common saying to begin to illustrate our common condition, with me as an example instead of the normal projection [blame].

          And then, I explain why. And here’s where i suffer some sarcasm. It’s painful to admit i’m a jerk under constant temptation to manipulate and maneuver for my advantage instead of join another in the far more noble and useful …pursuit of Truth. So, while i’m attacking my biases and nature … i try to make sarcastic fun of it all.

          And if you are a student of epistemology [fm the Greek; how we learn] as a means to ‘get better’ [teleology, how we perfect our learning]… then, are you not a student of appreciating the depths, faults, & digressions in our own prism – through which we say we see? Sorry that was so complicated. Vision Statement my behind! Here’s a simple old question about that relationship: “if the light that is in you is darkness…how great is the darkness”?

          So then i closed by stealing 4 common words we incessantly interject in daily speech today. I’ve put them into the acronym THAR. [connected elsewhere with Ahab's pursuit of the White Whale: "THAR she blows"!]

          Do not our ‘excited utterances’ of these words …reveal our perversions at work, confessed out of our own mouths? Example: “honest”! Means either “up to now i haven’t been honest” or “i’m about to cop to something, but you can bet it won’t be a true confession…only a token”. Or… “here comes a big one!” Have some fun: listen for these 4 words and explore their context.

          I guess it all boils down to “how can i contribute by starting at the top with my conclusion, when reality is i am at the bottom with no hope …envious of some fellow Sancho Panza tilting after the Windmill of Truth?

          Hope this helps, and explains why – for anyone seeking further Strength Through Pain – hop scotching thru my website or by email might be more useful … and more courteous to Aziz.

        • Buck68, you are hiding something, but not from us. In the complexities there is plenty of detail. If I tap you on the shoulder and say, “Here is your truth”, what then? But what if I rather ask, “Why should I tell you?” So then who is the cat and who is the mouse? And now Aziz and some others can see too, if they want. But the question is not me or they, but what (or who) will come out of you? No, checkmate is too easy. I go.

        • Smokey, is there is such a thing as “my” truth? Put another way, does a human possess the truth, or truth?

          Who among us is not “hiding something” [behind a Facade] or does not know something about himself others think they know [Blind Spot], or join with others in that vast area called the Unknown? These are Johari Window terms.

          While I agree with you that ‘cat and mouse’ is a natural game, rationally and/or morally, we can choose other than zero sum games.

          Or, say I see. Or say ‘we’ see. Or declare victory, and go.

          Yet, regardless of human feelings and choices… isn’t knowing we don’t know, inherent to wisdom?

          I think your last question is a fundamental, continuing one… for whosoever would keep trying to communicate, to learn, to pursue truth.

          So, I ask for feedback as a simple and necessary part of learning. And I choose to consider everything as feedback, if for no other reason than trying to recover from ‘doing what comes naturally’ first.

          Asking my self your question, “why should I tell you”, three things come to mind. First, this presumes I am the decider of to tell or not to tell; and in that presumption i wrongly make my self judge. Second, if i am trying to walk the talk of learning, i ask rather than tell, invite rather than reject, question rather than conclude. Third, my urge to put me first, begs the better question of Who IS First? I use three verb forms to discriminate between who is in charge of whatever comes out of me. Want – my animal urges. Should – what i feel is right. Ought – what is right, by Ultimate Authority.

          Inviting you… as is everything I ought to do – is no credit to me.

  31. “Under Obama”? I like the popular Mark Twain sarcasm: “there’s lies, damned lies…and statistics”. The dry version is to consider the assumptions and criteria for the formulae that produce the statistics.

    Meanwhile, what is more natural and common to redistribute from whom I don’t favor… to who I do? And dress that up in rhetoric that appeals to those who want to be taken care of, to ‘belong to ‘in’, to be ‘safe’? An old pyramid model used to discuss this: Maslow’s Hierarchy of [Human] Needs.

    Aziz, i like the question, ‘why do we keep falling for this’? Perhaps a short, sincere response is of Star Trek proportions? “My needs… outweigh the needs of the many”? ;-{)}

    Perhaps there is no ‘answer’ to… human nature. But… as our founders illustrated, there are ways to make it tougher to do what comes naturally.

    One simple illustration, based on the principle of applying the standard to each case, rather than applying what someone wanted or maneuvered to find the standard meant, i.e. interpreting the standard. Simply, use the ruler [standard] to measure each time, not the marks made on papers from using the ruler…unto multitudinous other marks…unto “empathy”. In other words, we cannot stop interpreting how to apply a standard, BUT. But we CAN stop using interpretations of a standard, as the standard.

    Like the minor distinction between re form … and re new. It would turn our “let’s make a deal” adversarial system on its… multi-pointed village head.

    Or, to dip into rhetoric, the minor diff between “justice” and… “our justice” [a Facade for MY justice].

      • OK… we are what we are. How do we describe that, in order to better understand, in order to try to improve… by a certain standard, instead of whatever whoever feels?

    • Truth, justice, and reality. I like this subject Buck68. Oh, when is it buck 69? ha ha

      Mind game: Suppose I took you to a basketball court and showed you the best prize of your life. Let’s say a beautiful naked woman for primative motive example. Now I blindfold you and the woman, turn the lights way down, and tell you that, if you can find your way to her 3 times in a row, you can keep her. Only she can talk. She wants you. You have to follow her voice. I move you about the room for a minute, then tell her she can talk. In less than 2 minutes you find your way to her in the dark.

      The second time I move you around again, but this time I put you behind a big oak desk. What happens? Is the oak desk only in my reality, only my truth? If you walk toward her can you walk right through the desk? No! (Is there no justice? ha ha) And it doesn’t matter if you are black or white, young or old, fat or skinny, good looking or ugly, rich or poor. You will be stopped by the desk because it is real and neither you or I own reality.

      It is so with all reality, truth and justice. There is but one and it is ours to observe, not own. All the rest are opinions and those opinions will be corrected by reality, when we face it ourselves.

      Note: I leave quantum physics reality out of this discussion. I use that to tell women when I am, but not where, or where I am but not when. It is only fair.

      Old mind game of mine. Thanks for letting me share it.

  32. Aziz wrote Jun 10th to Thorton Prayer: QUOTE And the reason I wrote the post was because of the gulf between his rhetoric and reality. [ex: He said spread the wealth, it concentrated faster. He had Congressional filibuster-proof majorities; delivered only a bastardised version of Romneycare].

    I honestly don’t know if Romney or Obama is better. [both economic trickle-down centrists, foreign policy neoconservatives]. [differences seem to be in rhetoric and background], which is why frustrated people on the left are happy to support Obama over Romney even if they disagree with Obama’s program, and frustrated people on the right are happy to support Romney over Obama even if they disagree with Romney’s program. UNQUOTE

    AZIZ. Agree: “differences seem to be”. Neither is behaving or comparing to a set standard. Both are, as the Clinton’s parsed, “triangulating” blame and trying to create “bimbo eruptions” for…the other guy, you just know how he is…is.

    Several years ago i stole some poster’s exact ‘ethical’ phrase for this: “my perception is reality”.

    The irony of a ‘moral argument’ motivating …people feeling passionately ‘right in their own mind’ …is enough to disintegrate any group … by destroying every ‘social contract’ with, as you put it, the “rhetoric”. Examples in today’s fav chaotic animal terms, “Diversity”, “whatever”, and “appropriate”. We’ve “progressed” from the chicanery of Greek gods, to everybody who’s anybody is god in his own mind.

    Here’s a sober, simple description of how “it works”, using statistics, fyi:

    http://townhall.com/columnists/thomassowell/2012/06/27/a_political_glossary_part_ii

  33. Pingback: I Didn’t Build This « azizonomics

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