Texas Longhorns with newborn calf in Bluebonnets

Texas Longhorns with newborn calf in Bluebonnets

Please note I have a new phone number...


Alan Maki

Alan Maki
Doing research at the LBJ Library in Austin, Texas

It's time to claim our Peace Dividend

It's time to claim our Peace Dividend

We need to beat swords into plowshares.

We need to beat swords into plowshares.

A program for real change...


What we need is a "21st Century Full Employment Act for Peace and Prosperity" which would make it a mandatory requirement that the president and Congress attain and maintain full employment.

"Voting is easy and marginally useful, but it is a poor substitute for democracy, which requires direct action by concerned citizens"

- Ben Franklin

Let's talk...

Let's talk...

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Why Barack Obama's "stimulus" package won't work

Barack Obama is proposing a stimulus package designed around pumping almost one-trillion dollars of tax-payer money into the coffers of private industry in order to "save and create three million jobs" as he dumps many times that into wars.

Here are the problems with this:

Before a dime is spent big-business will suck at least one-third of this money out in the form of profits. If providing big-business with profits is the way to stimulate the economy one must ask another very fundamental question:

Big-business has had its most profitable reign in this country over the last twenty years. If profits are associated with a thriving economy in any way, shape or form--- or are in any way responsible for a healthy economy--- the American economy should be thriving beyond anyone's wildest dreams right now. So, why is the economy sinking into the worst depression in human history?

The answer is quite simple: Corporate America has sucked so much wealth out of our economy in the form of profits that big-business didn't leave anything for the rest of us. CEO's and Wall Street coupon clippers get fabulously wealthy by amassing huge huge profits from the labor of working people. The result is that most of us can no longer purchase back what has been produced.

What we have is "over-production" in the midst of massive human needs going unmet in many areas from health care and housing to food, clothing, education and public infra-structure... not to mention people who are unemployed, employed part-time and at poverty wages cannot purchase consumer goods like automobiles, stoves and refrigerators. What the heck, many people cannot even afford to heat their homes let alone pay the mortgage.

If we allow Barack Obama to now turn over another trillion dollars to these greedy titans of big-business after it has been admitted and acknowledged that the the government can't even keep track of how the present trillion dollar bailout is being spent by the Wall Street bankers, how the heck are we going to know what hundreds of big-businesses are doing with another trillion dollar "stimulus" package?

Is anyone so naive to think that there is not massive corruption going on as these greedy pigs feed at the public trough?

We have seen the massive corruption involved in just about every single government agency from Health and Human Services to the Department of Interior... not to mention the vast web of corruption associated with military and highway and infrastructure spending.

The I35-W Bridge collapse is directly attributable to this massive corruption. There is no other explanation for improper gusset plates to have been used in building a bridge that was under constant inspection by both state and federal inspectors and a bridge which was supposedly routinely "inspected." If one does not believe corruption to have been involved, how, then, do we explain that after so many inspections and even a report citing the problem nothing was done to fix the problem?

Let's get real here. We have a corrupt and lying United States Congressman, James Oberstar, looking after transportation... and he makes the boast that he is solely responsible for all the roads and highways we have in Minnesota and most of the country... the corrupt engineering firms and contractors along with the corrupt building trades unions bankroll James Oberstar to the hilt; along with the banking, mining and forestry industries.

All infrastructure work is being done by private contractors... our departments of transportation do little more than plow snow, grade gravel roads and fill a few pot-holes--- on occasion, as a trip down just about any highway or road in Minnesota demonstrates these pot-holes are only filled occasionally.

One-trillion dollars isn't even enough to fill half the potholes in this country given the present level of private corporate and governmental corruption; let alone fix-up our public schools.

Three-million jobs? No way. Not if left to the present Wall Street coupon clippers and bankers.

Think about this:

Where will this trillion dollars for Obama's "stimulus package" come from?

The answer is easy.

Obama will now borrow back the trillion dollars the tax-payers just handed over to these Wall Street bankers to finance his infrastructure program! Obviously, the bankers are not lending this money out to anyone else because they intend to lend it for big fat interest payments to Obama for his "stimulus package."

If this isn't the epitome of a "racket" I don't know what else to call it.

And, working class tax-payers are the ones being taken for a ride since the Wall Street coupon clippers "pay" capital gains taxes not income tax... and it doesn't look like these Wall Street coupon clippers will be paying much in the way of capital gains taxes for quite some time.

During the depression of the 1930's jobs were created through public works projects and programs; thus, there was little to no corruption involved... except a hungry and tired worker leaning on a shovel periodically.

But, this capitalist economy is now so far gone, and mired in corruption, that it would take no less than six to eight trillion dollars invested in public works programs just to begin to turn things around.

Franklin D. Roosevelt and his Secretary of Labor--- Frances Perkins--- had high hopes that creating a socialized health care program would be the catalyst of the kind of public works programs required to get our country out of a depression... this idea of socialized health care was smothered by the Wall Street crowd of business oriented right-wing Democrats and Republicans who saw in a successful socialized health care system the prelude to socializing other parts of our economy... namely banking, energy, forestry and steel... and probably agriculture.

Regionally there were massive socialized programs--- like in energy--- with the Tennessee Valley Authority... much, if not most, which has now been privatized... detrimental privatizations we, as tax-payers and consumers of energy, are paying through the nose for.

It was not the idea of socialized health care these well-heeled opponents of socialized health care were really so concerned with as they organized opposition to Roosevelt's and Perkin's socialized health care project. What was at stake is a private industry (health care) being successfully placed under public ownership which struck such fear into the capitalists and fomented such massive opposition from big-business who feared that one socialist success would lead people to conclude that socialism works better than capitalism.

It is interesting to note, that Barack Obama now raises high, once again, the banner of the "politics of pragmatism" as the means to evade the need for massive real public works programs.

Let us make no mistake; private industry working on public infrastructure as proposed by Barack Obama is not the same as public works programs and projects.

As in the 1930's era depression, again, we need to look at socialized health care as the way out to get us out of the current depression.

And make no mistake, we are now in the midst of a general break-down of the capitalist economic system... a full blown depression is at hand. This depression is only going to worsen if control is left in the hands of those who profited in the first place as this mess was coming to be.

If only the Wall Street bankers and their hand-picked politicians would have merely twiddled their thumbs rather than stick their greedy fingers in the public till and pull the strings of their political puppets we would have been better off.

The make-work programs and projects of the 1930's by the Roosevelt Administration alleviated a whole lot of misery for working people. But, these programs and projects never were intended nor designed to get the country out of the economic depression. Had it not been for World War Two which was accompanied by massive industrial production financed with massive government spending which created massive debt, our country would still be in that economic depression (unless, of course, there would have been a socialist revolution).

I don't think any sane person is looking for war as a solution to the present economic mess. But, we had better be looking for an alternative to capitalism real quick.

The time has come to consider the fact that capitalism is a system which enriches the few while leaving massive misery and problems for the many; while socialism is a system of cooperation where the problems, concerns and the needs of the many will be resolved using the wealth created by working people.

As long as we tolerate a few corporate pigs and the corrupt public officials they bring to public office to run our country things are not going to change for the better. This is only common sense.

We can already see the glow and sparkle in the eyes of these greedy Wall Street bankers and corporate CEO's as they drool waiting in line over getting their "share" of business from Obama's "stimulus package."

How much longer will we continue to allow the Wall Street coupon clippers to abscond with all the profits as the working class gets left with the problems and the mess?

The only thing Obama's "stimulus package" is going to "stimulate" is these big, fat pigs fighting over who will feed at the public trough and suck in the profits.

As usual, working people will get the bill and the problems along with what the sparrows leave behind.

No doubt a few workers will get thrown bones by Obama to keep them quiet; but, most of the working class will suffer.

If anyone doubts this, we need only look at the situation surrounding the closing of the St. Paul Ford Twin Cities Assembly Plant... all it took was the promise of a few jobs in the building trades constructing an upscale racially segregated "green community" for the corrupt leaderships of the Minnesota AFL-CIO and Change To Win to join in cahoots with the St. Paul Chamber of Commerce and the Ford Motor Company wanting to demolish the plant and send two-thousand jobs to Thailand manufacturing the popular Ford Rangers... of course, corrupt public officials in the Democratic and Republican Parties and even in the green Party were only too eager to serve their corporate masters.

To expect that Barack Obama and his "politics of pragmatism" will demonstrate any more concern for the plight of American workers than he does for the plight of the Palestinian people being slaughtered by a right-wing, warmongering, racist Israeli regime bent on expansion and control of the surrounding lands and resources is sheer stupidity. Israel intends to do to the Palestinian people what the United States government did to the American Indian... steal their land and repress and impoverish the remaining people their campaign of genocide cannot eliminate.

Do you really expect that anyone who has just been elected to the presidency of the United States on a message of "the change we need" and then sits in silence in the face of such bestial and ruthless Israeli carnage of the Palestinian people in the name of the "politics of pragmatism" really cares about anyone or anything besides the interests of the Wall street bankers and coupon clippers who comprise the military-financial-industrial complex?

Something to think about and discuss around the dinner table as you contemplate the relationship between why you can't afford to go to a doctor and Obama's shameful silence in the face of the Israeli carnage of the Palestinian people--- most of whom are working people and their families--- taking place right now in Gaza.

Then think about why we don't have the resources needed to help American workers through this economic depression with real socially useful and necessary public works programs and projects like the Roosevelt Administration undertook so successfully.

What is our financing a worthless warmongering Israeli government to slaughter innocent Palestinian people really costing you?

A job? Health care? An education? Good roads and safe bridges?

What is this campaign of carnage in Gaza "stimulating" besides more war, death, destruction and hate?

By the time we are done paying for this carnage in Gaza there isn't going to be any money left to "stimulate" anything... we would be better off if we all just took our wallets and purses out to the nearest lake and tossed them out from the end of a dock to sink.

Only a complete fool would say they are trying to stimulate the economy on the one hand while on the other hand spending much more on wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and funding the Israeli carnage of the Palestinian people. We are all being played for suckers and fools.

Alan L. Maki