How Congress Occupied Wall Street


Capital Building - Corruption

 

CBS and 60 Minutes utilized the investigative work of Peter Schweizer to nudge into the world of political corruption in Congress. That corruption is that Congressmen can use insider tips to enrich themselves and do so legally. If a private citizen utilized the same insider tips quite likely they would be in violation of the law and would face jail, fines or both.

 

Sarah Palin has been anti-government corruption her entire political career. Palin builds on the expose of 60 Minutes and Peter Schweizer to level her own accusation against Congress and Congressional member with a Wall Street Journal op-ed.

 

Palin is still stumping for a better America. Sadly she has removed herself from consideration for the GOP nomination to face President Barack Hussein Obama. Whoever wins the GOP nomination should consider Palin for the Vice President nomination because of what she stands for AND Palin is one heck of a campaigner and motivator.

 

JRH 11/19/11 (Hat Tip: Newsmax)

Crony Capitalism, Schweizer and 60 Minutes


Throw Them All Out bk jacket

 

John R. Houk

© November 15, 2012

 

I received an alert message from Team Sarah concerning Crony Capitalism. The alert centers on Peter Schweizer who was part of an exposé on 60 Minutes about Crony Capitalism. Here is an excerpt of the original email sent by Team Sarah (The link above is an updated message of the original email):

 

Team,

 

It seems that the rest of the media is finally paying attention to the crony capitalism drum that Governor Sarah Palin has been beating for quite some time.  Tonight, 60 Minutes will air an episode that will feature Peter Schweizer, adviser to Governor Sarah Palin, and author of “Throw Them All Out”.

 

CBS news provides the following information on tonight’s show which will air at 7:00 p.m. Eastern:

 

Martha Stewart went to jail for it. Hedge fund honcho Raj Rajaratnam was fined $92 million and will go to jail for years for it. But members of Congress can do the same thing -use non-public information to make stock trades — and there’s no law against it. Steve Kroft reports on how America’s lawmakers can legally make tidy profits on information only they know, simply because they won’t pass a law against themselves. The report will be broadcast on Sunday, Nov. 13 at 7 p.m. ET/PT.

 

Among the revelations in Kroft’s report:

 

* Members of Congress have bought stock in companies while laws that could affect those companies were being debated in the House or Senate.

 

* At least one representative made significant stock purchases the day after he and other members of Congress attended a secret meeting in September 2008, where the Fed chair and the treasury secretary informed them of the imminent global economic meltdown. The meeting was so confidential that cell phones and other digital devices were confiscated before it began. (You can read the rest of the CBS article HERE) 

 

There were several links relating to Crony Capitalism inherent in Congress (Dems & GOP) and the Executive Branch. The reports focus on Obama’s Administration of the Executive Branch but I would not be surprised that there has been Crony Capitalism among several Presidential Administrations over the years in the 20th and 21st centuries.

 

Just so we are all on the same page, let us examine briefly a definition of Crony Capitalism:

 

Crony capitalism is a term describing a capitalist economy in which success in business depends on close relationships between business people and government officials. It may be exhibited by favoritism in the distribution of legal permits, government grants, special tax breaks, and so forth.

 

Crony capitalism is believed to arise when political cronyism spills over into the business world; self-serving friendships and family ties between businessmen and the government influence the economy and society to the extent that it corrupts public-serving economic and political ideals. (Wikipedia)

 

The definition above seems to focus on the benefits of business from the favoritism of government. In most cases many of benefits if exposed quite probably are illegal for private citizens. Schweizer examines Crony Capitalism through the lenses of benefits for government individuals as noted earlier in Congress and the Executive Branch. In Congress’ case it is totally LEGAL for members of Congress to benefit from economic and stock information for personal enrichment monetarily. I am guessing the Obama Administration does not have the covering of a legal umbrella that will prevent investigations and arrests.

 

Sarah Palin close-up

 

Crony Capitalism is a primary message that had been delivered by Sarah Palin in her Tea Party stumping over the past few years (too bad she opted out of GOP nomination). A good example of this is Sarah Palin herself as heard on Grizzly Coalition Action Report from Blog Talk Radio.

 

Peter Schweizer’s book, articles and news shows appearances are important because he is also getting coverage from the MSM. Schweizer’s coverage of Crony Capitalism gives strength for the existence of the Tea Party Movement (TPM) and TPM’s influence in the Republican Party to give the boot to politicians that insist on the old politics as usual thinking. One of the ways to get a hold of America’s economic woes is to make the rule of law apply to government just as much as to Joe Voter.

 

Below is a Schweizer article on Crony Capitalism followed by the 60 Minutes spot that peers into government Crony Capitalism with a particular focus on Congressional Insider Trading.

 

 

JRH 11/15/11

Brotherly Love & Israel’s Redemption


Ari Bussel 2

 

This one of the best essays I have ever read from Ari Bussel. Because of this here is a bit of information about Bussel that I have not updated in some time. As far as I know Bussel’s main project is writing for his website Post Cards from America – Post Cards from Israel. The website has a co-writer in Norma Zager.

 

Here is a bio-blip on Bussel and Zager from News Blaze:

 

In the series “Postcards from Israel,” Ari Bussel and Norma Zager invite readers throughout the world to join them as they present reports from Israel as seen by two sets of eyes: Bussel’s on the ground, Zager’s counter-point from home. Israel and the United States are inter-related – the two countries we hold dearest to our hearts – and so is this “point – counter-point” presentation that has, since 2008, become part of our lives.

 

From the writings of Bussel and Zager I have posted in the past it is apparent they are passionate for Israel. The point/counter-point thing in my opinion is a very thin line because both are so pro-Israel and both are Jews. I guess if I knew more about their public personas I might be able to distinguish some differences.

 

Below is a Bussel post sent to SlantRight.com that utilizes the moral/spiritual standards of Jews living in Israel as perhaps a potential reason for Israel’s demise. Bussel writes of a strong Israeli economy and military; however he surmises that political and economic corruption is rampant inside Israel. He touches on the “haves” and “have-nots” as well as secular Jews vs. religious Jews. Bussel compares Israel current inner state of existence to that of Israel’s past which led to the downfall of Israel, the divided Kingdoms of Israel and Judah and the Roman executed Diaspora of Jews in the first century AD.

 

This essay is powerful and thought provoking to the Jew first and to the Gentile: “Brotherly Love & Israel’s Redemption”.

 

JRH 8/9/11

Production, Unions, National Debt and the American Transformation


Mob-Union

 

John R. Houk

© February 2011

 

Industrialization in America was good for America. When factories needed workers it attracted farmers, rural citizens and immigrants to urban areas to meet the need for production.

 

The problem with industrialization was that ownership and management were looking for the best way to optimize profits. As good as industrialization was for America’s free market economy it left a lot of room to ignore the needs and safety of employees. Increasingly employees of factories became known as laborers and workers. In the quest for optimized profits the workers were exploited to the full extent a human could experience working for pittance often in an unsafe working environment. Indeed a substantial amount of workers in factories were children working the same long hours as adults which was essentially from sunrise to sunset often with a seven day work week.

 

These workers were essentially regarded as a means to an end for Industrialists with the employees not well regarded. Hence when novel political ideas advanced by Fabianism and Marxism (Detail: Marxism Unmasked, Von Mises) began to be shared with uneducated workers a substantial amount of people began to fall for the utopianism in which working conditions would not be oppressive. Fabianists were socialists that believed in a peaceful evolution away from Free Market Capitalism. Marxists were socialists that believed change would only happen by an armed revolution of the worker-laborer class to end personal ownership and eventually a stateless society of mutual cooperation.

 

Undoubtedly the Fabian/Marxist utopian dream caught on with the horrible working conditions of the relatively low wages for long hours experienced by employees. It seems to me that Unions began to gain strength after the infusion of socialistic ideas began to disseminate from Marxist activists toward the unlearned labor force. The promise of a long range utopia seemed very attractive to short term memory.

 

Of course the reality of history has shown the Marxist path as interpreted by Trotsky, Lenin, Stalin and Mao was a path to oppression and probably the most unpublicized genocide in world history. There was no path from violent revolution to change society into the collective means of ownership and production that would benefit the whole. Rather after the Marxist revolutions the Marxist-Communist leaders embarked on a plan to eradicate all thought of attachment to ownership, traditional family values and religion. In the view of these revolutionary Marxists the only way to change the future was to eliminate an attachment to the past. Below is a paragraph representing the genocide of people that lost their lives in the name of social transformation from the two largest Marxist/Communist nations of the 20th century:

 

Between 1917 and 1987, Vladimir Lenin, Joseph Stalin and their successors murdered, or were otherwise responsible for the deaths of, 62 million of their own people. Between 1949 and 1987, Mao Tse-tung and his successors were responsible for the deaths of 76 million Chinese. The most authoritative tally of history’s most murderous regimes is in a book by University of Hawaii’s Professor Rudolph J. Rummel, “Death by Government.” A wealth of information is provided at his website. (Leftists, Progressives and Socialists; October 21, 2010)  

 

Did you do the math? The sum of genocidal deaths was 138 MILLION people. My friends this is the failure of Socialism/Marxism.

 

Unsuspecting exploited American workers had no idea the long term promise of a collective Socialist or Marxist utopia would lead to oppression that made profit margin Capitalists look like a picnic.

 

In one sense the rise of powerful Unions was part of ending the mistreatment of workers via government regulation that benefitted better work hours, better wages, better safety, better health benefits and the elimination of child labor in industry. Unions brought parity between the employed and their owner/managers. Indeed, it was discovered that better conditions actually improved the means of production which increased profits which increased wages and benefits.

 

I will not go into the bitter bloodiness that occurred between owner/manager and Unions. There were atrocities of violence on both sides until a symbiotic relationship proved beneficial.

 

I will go into how Unions began to be both a detriment to their Collective members and the means of production as it affected the American economy. Just as Industrialists became greedy Capitalists in the beginning of the Industrial Revolution so also Union leadership became greedy for more benefits, more wages and more power which meant more money in the coffers of the Unions. The big Unions began to be haunted by corruption. The Socialist utopianism espoused by early Union leaders turned powerful fiefdoms in which thuggery was used to keep members in line or to brutalize those who did not want to join the Unions. The combination of Union high demands and Union corruption led to a point in which owners found it cheaper to move the means of production to nations where the wage demand was a fraction of the American Union demands. Eventually America moved from a producer nation to a consumer nation.

 

Just as Capitalists needed government regulation, it is time for government regulation to enable Right to Work laws that give workers a better opportunity to land a job eschewing a Union. It is time to regulate the power of Unions. That symbiotic balance between owner/manager and Unions must be found again or America’s lack of production combined with America’s increasing National Debt will explode to America’s detriment.

 

As much as I am concerned about Marxist principle and Islamic theo-politics robbing America of Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness; it could all become irrelevant as National chaos turns America into something that will discharge the U.S. Constitution and lead to another form of government that will lead to the decline of the Pax Americana. The historical lesson is the Roman Republic devolving into a populist cult leadership that led to civil wars which led to a Roman Empire that was lucky enough to have a capable first emperor in Augustus. After Augustus the Roman infrastructure slowly deteriorated until it was divided into two spheres of influence. The Western Latin sphere degenerated into the last powerless emperor that lost his Imperial throne in 476 because the only area of rule was the area of Italian Rome itself (The capital city actually being Ravenna). The Eastern part of the Roman Empire eventually became a Greek speaking empire that acquired the appellation of the Byzantine Empire. The Byzantine East became weaker and weaker due to wars with Persians which exhausted its Empire. The Byzantine/Persian wars actually left both empires depleted and were eventually overrun by conquering Muslims. In the case of the last vestige of the Roman Empire, the Byzantine capital of Constantinople was overrun on May 29, 1453 ending the Byzantine Empire.

 

I suspect a similar slow demise will begin if lack of production and an unsustainable National Debt collapses the greatest political experiment the world has ever seen.

 

I became lost in these thoughts because I was the recipient of a mass email by Senator Rand Paul (R-KY). The purpose of the email was to raise support for the National Right to Work Act. The Act would enable the potential for businesses to be created in which production is made in America rather than American debt owner Communist China. Check out the Senator Paul rally for the petition and I encourage you to sign it.

 

JRH 2/26/11

************************

Sign the petition Obama fears

 

From Senator Rand Paul

Sent: 2/24/2011 10:36 AM

 

Dear Concerned American,

 

I didn’t come to Washington, D.C. to buddy up to Big Labor and continue decades upon decades of “politics as usual.”

I came to turn this place around.

And if there’s one thing I learned during the historic 2010 elections, it’s that good folks like you and me can make a real difference.

 

So won’t you please agree to sign the petition I link to in a moment urging your Congressman and Senators to cosponsor the National Right to Work Act to finally END Big Labor’s stranglehold on our government and our fragile economy?

The truth is, there may be nothing President Obama and his union boss pals fear more than a public roll-call vote on this bill.

You see, right now, more than 11 million American workers are forced to pay union dues just to keep their jobs.

That’s just plain wrong.

But every bit as bad is the toll forced unionism is taking on our economy.

Just in the past few years, UAW union bosses armed with forced-dues privileges nearly drove the Big Three automakers to insolvency — until they were bailed out by American taxpayers.

Of course, the thousands of small businesses who were forced to shut their doors due to Big Labor militancy weren’t so lucky.

In the government sector, out-of-control union bosses’ outrageous demands, cushy pensions and bloated benefit packages all helped push California and dozens of other cities and states to the brink of bankruptcy.

And more stories like these are sure to come.

So, especially during these tough economic times, why has forced unionism been allowed to continue?

Well, thanks to their forced-dues privileges, the Big Labor bosses rake in eight BILLION dollars every year in forced union dues.

Every election year the union bosses spend one BILLION of that to elect and reelect their own handpicked politicians like Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and Barack Obama.

Then, once elected, these tax-and-spend politicians fight for even MORE union-label power grabs like:

 

*** The “Card Check” Bill to strip workers of their right to a secret ballot election and FORCE millions more American workers under union boss control;

 

*** The Police and Firefighter Forced Unionization Bill which is designed to force EVERY first responder in the country under union boss control — and is just the first step toward turning all state and local government workers nationwide over to Big Labor;

 

*** New, TRILLION-dollar “stimulus packages” and social welfare boondoggles like ObamaCare all laden with Big Labor goodies — sending our already soaring deficit through the roof and increasing pressure for economy-crushing tax hikes;

 

*** Taxpayer bailouts for everything from failed unionized companies to Big Labor’s own mismanaged “Cadillac” union pension funds.

 

I hope you agree something’s got to change.

The good news is, passage of a National Right to Work act would end the forced-dues mandates in federal law and finally put an end to this vicious cycle.

So please, join this fight by clicking here to sign the petition to your Senators and Congressman.

 

You see, just getting a public, roll-call vote in both houses of Congress would be a huge victory.

Nearly 80% of the American people are opposed to forced union dues.

So if the union bosses’ pals in the U.S. House and Senate want to vote against our National Right to Work Act, they can be my guest.

They’ll pay the political price at the ballot box when faced with reelection — and 2012 could be an even worse year for forced unionism and the union bosses than 2010!

Just imagine the price the union bosses’ allies will pay once the American people come face-to-face with the fact that:

 

*** Millions of workers are forced to surrender part of every paycheck to Big Labor just to keep their jobs.

 
This cash funds aggressive “organizing” drives, a limousine lifestyle for union bigwigs, and bankrolls radical, tax-and-spend politicians like Barack Obama;

 

*** Big Labor’s power is poison to hundreds of thousands of small businesses.


Union-label politicians and Obama-stacked bureaucracies are strangling small businesses with confiscatory taxes, destructive laws and straitjacket regulations;

 

*** Union thugs terrorize workers and communities with violent strikes where they get away with beatings, arson — even murder.

 

But this fight won’t be easy.

The union bosses are going to do everything they can to try and suffocate the National Right to Work Bill quietly behind the scenes without even a public vote.

That’s why I’ve agreed to help the National Right to Work Committee mobilize Americans from all over the country to force Congress to vote publicly on the National Right to Work Act.

They’ve been leading the fight to end forced unionism in America for more than 50 years.

 
The Committee has drafted a petition to your Congressman and Senators that
I hope you’ll agree to sign IMMEDIATELY by clicking here.

 

This petition is a vital part of the Committee’s plan to turn up the heat on Congress and force a vote on a National Right to Work law.

Using their sophisticated direct mail, email and phone mobilization programs, they’ll make sure Big Labor’s allies in Congress know they won’t get away with sweeping the forced-unionism issue under the rug.

In fact, over the next few months, their goal is to contact up to fourteen million Americans!

And in the days before the vote, the Committee will prepare hard-hitting newspaper, radio and TV ads to make sure my colleagues understand the political price they’ll pay should they choose to betray the nearly 80% of their constituents who oppose forced unionism.

But such a massive program isn’t cheap — and none of it can happen without the support of good folks like you.

So, in addition to your signed petition, I hope you’ll agree to a generous contribution to the National Right to Work Committee.

Some folks have given as much as $2,500 or $1,000.

That’s a lot, I know. Only a few folks can make that kind of contribution.

All I ask is that you please contribute as much as you can.

Perhaps you can give $500 or $250. Or perhaps $100, $50 or $35.

Friend, folks like you and me who truly believe in freedom must make sure that victories at the ballot box aren’t wasted.

Instead we should capitalize on them — and one of the best ways to do that is to force a vote on the National Right to Work Act.

 

So please, click here to sign the petition to your Congressman and Senators right away!

And after signing your petition, will you agree to a generous contribution of $500, $250, $100, $50 or $35 to the National Right to Work Committee today?

I’m counting on your support.

Sincerely,

The Hon. Rand Paul
U.S. Senator (R-KY)

 

P.S. There may be nothing President Obama and his Big Labor allies fear more than a public roll-call vote on the National Right to Work Act to END forced union dues nationwide.

 

With nearly 80% of the American people opposed to forced unionism, should Big Labor’s allies choose to vote AGAINST this bill, they’ll go down in flames at the ballot box.

 

So please sign the petition to your Congressman and Senators urging them to cosponsor the National Right to Work Act — and make your most generous contribution of $500, $250, $100, $50 or $35 to the National Right to Work Committee TODAY!

_______________________________

Production, Unions, National Debt and the American Transformation

John R. Houk

© February 25, 2011

_____________________________

Sign the petition Obama fears