Newspaper Irresponsibility — Reprinting Propaganda Lies

From Sept. 23 Readers’ letters – San Jose Mercury News

ACORN corruption is no trivial matter

In his interview with George Stephanopoulos on Sunday, ex-ACORN attorney President Barack Obama denied any knowledge of that organization having received over $55 billion in federal funding. He stated he had not paid attention to such trivial matters as he had bigger issues to deal with. That the liberal media swallow such indigestible fodder is reinforced by the Nick Anderson cartoon (Opinion, Sept. 21). Like our president, this gullible cartoonist views the ACORN corruption as an nonevent stirred up by contentious conservatives.

$55 billion?

In the last 15 years ACORN has received a total of $53 million – with an ‘M’ – in funding from the government. That comes to $3.5 million a year. That amount is more than 1000 times less than SJ News readers would now believe. Almost all of this is to “ACORN Housing” for providing assistance with low-income housing programs — things like helping poor people fight off foreclosures.

I Will be Blogging From The Pittsburgh G20 JOBS Summit

I am flying to Pittsburgh tomorrow and will be blogging Thursday and Friday from the G20 summit, at the Blog for OurFuture as part of the Campaign for America’s Future‘s Making It In America project.
The G20 is a meeting of the Group of Twenty (G-20) Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors of “systemically important industrialized and developing economies to discuss key issues in the global economy.”
From their website,

The G-20 is made up of the finance ministers and central bank governors of 19 countries: Argentina,Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States of America [See, since Bush we are last on every list! - DJ]
The European Union, who is represented by the rotating Council presidency and the European Central Bank, is the 20th member of the G-20. To ensure global economic fora and institutions work together, the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the President of the World Bank, plus the chairs of the International Monetary and Financial Committee and Development Committee of the IMF and World Bank, also participate in G-20 meetings on an ex-officio basis. The G-20 thus brings together important industrial and emerging-market countries from all regions of the world. Together, member countries represent around 90 per cent of global gross national product, 80 per cent of world trade (including EU intra-trade) as well as two-thirds of the world’s population. The G-20’s economic weight and broad membership gives it a high degree of legitimacy and influence over the management of the global economy and financial system.

We should call it the JOBS summit because that is what this is really about. How will the world restructure the economic system after the financial crisis? How can we change things to regular people share the wealth? Of course Wall Street wants everything kept just the way it is. But the rest of the world is demanding that we make changes.
Then there will be a lot of talk about “protectionism,” because President Obama actually enforced a trade agreement! Here’s the thing, agreements are not agreements unless they are enforced. By enforcing this agreement with China, it means we might start having fair, honest, balanced trade again.
Anyway, I look forward to this trip and to writing about the G20 Summit. Check in at Blog for OurFuture over the next few days. I think we’re going to solve the world’s problems — don’t miss out!

RW Blogger Says Electing Black Man Bad For Race Relations

Just look at this nonsense, prominently featured at the Republican TownHall site: John Hawkins : 5 Reasons Obama’s Election Is Bad For Race Relations

Against this backdrop came Barack Obama with an unspoken promise: elect me as President and America can put race in the rear view mirror once and for all. After all, if Americans elected a black President, how racist could the country really be?
[. . .] With black Americans, race comes first. If white Americans felt the same way, there’s certainly no way that Barack Obama could ever have been elected President.
[. . .] Too many people have used racism as an all-purpose excuse for their failures in life. But, after a black man with mediocre qualifications rose all the way up to the become President of the United States, it seems natural to ask how much of an impediment race can really be in America?
[. . .] Barack Obama is playing an extremely cynical game with the race card. … He doesn’t ask his supporters to stop crying “racism.” So, everyone who opposes him politically gets smeared as a racist, while he doesn’t have to personally get his hands dirty. For a cynical, sleazy, manipulative politician, it’s the best of both worlds. For the rest of the country, it’s an ugly game that serves the country poorly.
. . . Obama is a bumbling, corrupt, megalomaniacal train wreck who has been a disaster at home and a weakling abroad. He can already legitimately be compared to the worst Presidents in American history — yet, his approval rating with black Americans is still above 90%.
How healthy is it for the country to have 92% of black Americans approving of the job Obama is doing while only 42% of white Americans approve?

It is weird how color is the only thing Republicans seem to be able to see. That and the color of big-corporate money..

Blue Dog Mike Ross In Fishy $$$ Deal

This really looks like a flat-out cash payment to kill health care reform.
Mike Ross Raises Eyebrows With Healthy Haul – ProPublica

Arkansas Rep. Mike Ross — a Blue Dog Democrat playing a key role in the health care debate — sold a piece of commercial property in 2007 for substantially more than a county assessment … and an independent appraisal … say it was worth.
The buyer: an Arkansas-based pharmacy chain with a keen interest in how the debate plays out.
Ross sold the real estate in Prescott, Ark., to USA Drug for $420,000 — an eye-popping number for real estate in the tiny train and lumber town about 100 miles southwest of Little Rock.
“You can buy half the town for $420,000,” said Adam Guthrie, chairman of the county Board of Equalization and the only licensed real estate appraiser in Prescott.
But the $420,000 was just the beginning of what Ross and his pharmacist wife, Holly, made from the sale of Holly’s Health Mart. The owner of USA Drug, Stephen L. LaFrance Sr., also paid the Rosses $500,000 to $1 million for the pharmacy’s assets and paid Holly Ross another $100,001 to $250,000 for signing a non-compete agreement. Those numbers, which Ross listed on the financial disclosure reports he files as a member of Congress, bring the total value of the transaction to between $1 million and $1.67 million. [emphasis added]

Go read!
I’ve said before that I think the Blue Dogs are all about leveraging their position for personal cash.

Is Obama Impotent In The Face Of Corporate Opposition?

Not my choice of words. A European paper declares Obama the impotent because of US inaction on climate and financial reform.
The reason for the Congressional inaction on these issues is corporate money and Obama’s insistence on “bipartisanship.” Since the Republican Party is a wholly-owned subsidiary of big corporations, this means Obama is insisting on the big corporations telling the rest of us what to do.
I will be covering the G20 this week from Pittsburgh, where topic number one is U.S. financial reform.

Who Runs The Country?

Chris Bowers says that the health care debate isn’t as much about health care as Its About Who Runs The Country,

So this is about who the Democrats in Congress and the White House are going to govern with:
–Those who think that protecting large industries is more important than providing lower cost health care;
–Those who think offering lower cost health care is more important than protecting large industries.

Governor’s Tax Commission — Why Help The Already Wealthy??

Dave Johnson, Speak Out California
The Governor’s tax commission – called COTCE – is proposing a “flat tax.”  Peter Schrag begins his LA Times op-ed today, A flat-wrong flatter-tax plan, by writing,

The most obvious thing about the big, complicated tax reform scheme that will go to the Legislature this week is that millionaires would save an average of $109,000 a year.

Exactly. When you understand your mission as helping the wealthy, as COTCE everything about this commission makes it appear they have done (the plan also eliminates the corporate income tax), what does that say about what is in store for the rest of us?
Hannah-Beth Jackson pointed this out the other day, in COTCE Parsky Commission: Even More Tax Breaks for the Wealthy,

Contact the Governor, Senate President Pro tem Darrell Steinberg and Speaker Karen Bass and tell them:

NO MORE GIVEAWAYS TO THOSE WHO HAVE THE MOST AT THE EXPENSE OF THE REST OF US. NO TO THE COTCE COMMISSION REPORT THAT CONTINUES TO PUSH ITS RIGHT-WING AGENDA BY GIVING TAX BREAKS TO THOSE WHO HAVE THE MOST AND PUTTING THE BURDEN ON THOSE WHO HAVE THE LEAST.
What we need is a tax system that is fair, places the most responsibility on those who have the most so that all Californians have the opportunity to get the best education possible; be safe in their homes, schools and on the streets; are able to access quality, affordable healthcare and live a life of dignity and respect, regardless of their financial circumstances.
Urge the Legislature to take up a tax reform package that incorporates the ideas and principles recommended to the COTCE Commission (which were thrown aside by Parsky and his wealthy cronies) but which would make the system fairer, promote jobs, protect the environment and reflect a 21st Century economy.
For information on contacting state elected officials click here.

Let’s do what she suggested!  For information on contacting state elected officials click here.
Click through to Speak Out California

Health Care With 51 Votes

If Democrats present the public with a good health care plan that doesn’t cost much the public will thank them and vote for them. If the public hears that Republicans tried to block it, they’ll vote against Republicans in the future.

They will not care if it raises the deficit
. If they get health care cheap they will love it.
I mean, how much did the public care when Republicans forced through Bush’s tax cuts for the rich? That was forced through using “reconciliation,” and took the budget from a $250 billion surplus to a $1.25 trillion deficit.

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