The moral rot of America’s two major political parties.

Glen Brown

-By Glen Brown. Glen writes at Teacher/Poet/Musician

We live in a country where the Democratic/Republican Party System is failing us; where venture capitalists and hedge fund billionaires are buying and destroying our democracy; where 401(k) s are fraudulent games of theft and greed played within the wealthy financial sector; where numerous senators and representatives are pawns of the American Legislative Exchange Council; where “the privatization of health services has corresponded closely with skyrocketing costs, leaving millions of Americans without access to care or deeply in debt for seeking treatment for their illnesses.”

We live in a country where a major credit-rating agency was accused of “manipulating pension data”; where “Koch-supported groups have strongly worked behind the scenes on the federal and local levels to eradicate Social Security and Medicare as overly costly entitlements given to working class people,” and where the Koch Brothers and major corporations sponsor pension reform seminars for judges.

We live in a country where Moody’s Investors Service, Fitch Ratings and Standard & Poor’s “gave out AAA ratings to sub-prime mortgage-backed securities. The securities, of course, turned out to be toxic, but the agencies were paid anyway. What’s worse, when Wall Street ran out of questionable mortgages to securitize, it created a whole new market based on bets on those securities, bets called ‘derivatives.’ The Big Three kept on handing out AAA ratings to these complicated new products, and were again paid handsomely to do so. The rating agencies made hundreds of millions of dollars, but in the end, it was American taxpayers who paid the price — losing their savings, their homes and their jobs in addition to having to pay billions to bail out banks…”

We live in a country where breaking a constitutional contract with retirees and public employees is deemed morally and legally justifiable by legislative liars and thieves; where public employees and retirees are victims of plutocratic, concentrated economic privilege and power that accommodates and reinforces an enormous inequality of organizational resources for corporate self-seekers; where public schools are for sale; where public school teachers have been assaulted by a barrage of attacks on their autonomy, dignity and self-respect; where labor unions have lost political power and influence; where there is no pay equity or job security for college adjunct faculty, and where “memories of the university as a citadel of democratic learning have been replaced by a university eager to define itself largely as an adjunct of corporate power.”

We live in a country where the plutocratic free market theory caters to self-interested desires and profit to the detriment of millions of Americans, while promising “freedom and prosperity;” where Free market principles advocate that the rich and poor should be taxed at the same flat rate, despite creating a vast inequity; where education, health care, retirement pensions, national parks (and most any function intrinsic to essential governing) become privatized to reap in more profits; where publicly-owned companies, services and their assets are auctioned off to private investors; that besides allocating vast amounts of wealth and resources from public to private ownership, there is a transfer of private debts to the public sector while public ownership and service are systematically dismantled.

8 thoughts on “The moral rot of America’s two major political parties.

  1. Glen is right. We are kn a crisis. We have a real economy that has not grown since 1973. A third of the econlmy is wall street and health care scams. Those would be the health and finance sectors which have grown but have enriched a few while no longer providing results for patients and whatever banksters are supposed to do.Our manufacturing base was sent to China. Obama says gee some folks are angry about their poverty and the pushes the TPP. The elites then wonder why Sanders is catching fire. Trump is as well. There is real revolt in both parties. The GOP is in from what best I can tell a three or four way split between the establishment/corportist,the Kochs,the fundies and the nationalist populists led by Trump. The GOP establishment seems closest to the Hillary/rahm Dem corpoatists than their enemy factions. Then there is the Dem populists progressives represented by Sanders. Threre is an old machine faction still hanging around…eg Mike Madigan and it shifts as needed for its own survival.

  2. There seems to be a heck of a power struggle in China too. Maybe economic and ecological collapse bring these on. But i wont bore you further and auto correct is going to make me pitchfork this mostly China made device

    • What to do what to do? Taxpayers either can’t or won’t put more dollars into a bucket that is being emptied faster than taxpayers can filll it. Either retirees will continue to receive their benefits until the bucket is empty or retirees willl agree to cutbacks. Problem is, nobody speaks authoritatively for the retirees becauses the unions only represent the actives. One solution mght be for the federal government to insure benefits up to a dollar cap and let individual teachers and retirees opt in or out. Those who opt in would have a federally-insured pension, but probably in a dollar amoutn that is less than they are getting now. Those who don’t opt in would take their chances with the Illinois courts, legislature and voters. OR (more likley) they would take their chances with the bankruptcy court. Bankruptcy court is where this ends if retirees and taxpayers don’t find a way to work this out. If I’m already retired, I like the option of getting all I can from the pension trust fund until it runs dry. So I’ll go along with Fred and get whatever I can, because I have already been to the buffet and I enjoy the offerings. Why not fill my plate until the banquet is over? Why should retirees try to solve the problem? The longer retirees fight about it, the longer they receive their COLA-adjusted pensions and their health care. Student education, active teachers’ pay and benefits, school building repairs, special ed, etc. are not contract rights. Only pensions are contract rights.

      • Anonymous,
        What too do? Make no mistake, the pension fund shortfalls are caused by the state not putting in their required “employer match”, NO OTHER REASON! The state needs to pay their obligation. When the income tax was at 5%, the state was able to meet it’s obligations, and the sky did not fall. The state has a revenue problem, NOT a pension problem. What to do? Put the income tax back at 5%, re-adjust the payment “ramp”, and elect politicians who will do those things. Vote out any and all that go along with Rauner, and then defeat Rauner in 3 years.
        Anon

  3. This is a national international crisis gas nothing to do with the idiot illinois pols who did not fund the pensions. You can blame the the national pols for tjeir repeated failure to do anything ac
    bout our broken underperforming overpriced healthcare system. Healthcare mostly medicaide is what really blew our budget open.

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