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...

Friday, March 27, 2009

Obama seeks input of bank CEOs on recovery plans

Today the headlines are:

Obama seeks input of bank CEOs on recovery plans...

...But when is Obama going to seek input from working people who are suffering the brunt of this depression?

What is needed is a massive and comprehensive "people's bailout" based on the legislation drafted by a small group of progressive Minnesota State Legislators which must become the template for national legislation.

Wall Street bankers and coupon clippers are the ones who profit from this rotten capitalist system... a system in which economic depressions are an inherent feature which cannot be avoided.

The capitalist system is a dog-eat-dog system where those at the top get richer and richer as the meanest dogs grab the most and horde the wealth created by the working class leaving us with their shit to clean up.

Big-business and the bankers created this entire mess and now the politicians they have purchased are using our tax-dollars to clean up the mess so working people are getting royally shafted with a rough, un-greased telephone pole full of slivers over and over again.

Obama says the "country 'can't afford to demonize' every profit-seeking investor or entrepreneur because that is what fuels prosperity, and is what will get banks lending and the economy moving again."

Wrong. Dead wrong. And this is why everything Obama and the Democrats are doing will make life more miserable for working people.

"Profit-seeking" does not fuel prosperity. This "profit-seeking" creates problems for working people as it robs society of the wealth needed to provide a quality life for all.

Labor creates all wealth with some very significant help from Mother Nature.

Priorities in this country under the capitalist system are all screwed up.

Obama talks about "profit-seeking" as if it is some noble endeavor; it is nothing of the kind; it is thievery plain and simple.

Any school child understands that labor cannot be continually robbed of the wealth it creates as we stand by and watch Mother Nature get raped over and over again without some very serious problems developing.

It is this insatiable greedy drive for maximum profits by these same "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs" who Obama places on a pedestal to worship that are the underlying source of each and every problem we are experiencing.

What we need to do as a people is move on to stage two.

Stage one was dumping the Republicans.

Stage two... we need to move on to consolidating the movement which drove the Republicans out to driving these "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs" from power.

Obviously, Obama and the Democrats are seeking to protect these "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs" who are not entitled to any such protection from government.

These are very greedy people who would deny hungry school children free meals.

These are the "merchants of death and destruction" who profit from wars.

These are the greedy who profit from health care.

These "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs" are the very ones who have driven the auto industry into the ground.

These "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs" are the ones who want to turn every single human endeavor into a source of greater profits... they will even destroy our public school system in quest of profits if given the opportunity.

These "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs" are the military-financial-industrial complex which has spun this web of state-monopoly capitalism that is nothing more than a scheme to extract maximum super-profits.

These "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs" have demonized themselves.

The time has come to bring the working class to power in this country, this is long overdue.

We need to completely reorder the priorities of this country so we get off this track that the drive for profits is the be all and end all of everything. We need to get our country off this insane war binge that is bleeding our country dry and begin directing the resources of our country toward meeting human needs--- Profits before people must be replaced with People before profits.

Barack Obama is part of the problem of what is wrong with this country. This pompous, arrogant, self-promoting, self-serving, flim-flam man and con-artist has risen to power under the guise of claiming to be for "change" without ever being forced to say what kind of change he had in mind.

Did anyone ever want or even anticipate the kind of "change" we see in this country today? No.

These problems did not develop overnight.

The capitalist sooth-Sayers tried to keep the economic problems hidden from the people until the floor fell out from under them. And now they come along with this crap, don't demonize "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs."

If "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs" are not responsible for the dire economic straits we are in today; who is?

Obama might have tricked some people but most of those who voted for him did so because he was the only alternative to John McCain. The election results were no mandate for this Wall Street profit orgy, nor were the election results a mandate to ramp up the drive to more wars.

If there are any two things the American people wanted from the election it was:

1. An end to these insane imperialist wars.

2. A no-fee/no-premium, not-for-profit comprehensive public health care system.

Where is the democracy? We are getting neither peace nor health care.

What Barack Obama has done is help Wall Street bankers and coupon clippers to consolidate their power and the strangle-hold they had on our country at a time when the rising anger of working people was prying loose their grip, and they now are using this economic mess as a chance to re-gain a better, firmer grip around our necks--- squeezing even harder.

These "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs" of Wall Street won't be satisfied until they have squeezed the last drop of blood from our veins.

We have a choice: the undertaker can bury these "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs" along with their decaying capitalist system now nothing more than a parasitic, cannibalistic beast preying on anything in its path; or, the undertaker will bury us.

The time has come for the working class to carry out its historic task of burying this rotten capitalist system.

A cooperative socialist system free from these parasitical "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs" is the only remedy.

Capitalism is on the skids to oblivion placing us on the road to perdition... the time has come to take the first left turn off this dangerous road.

This is not about "business practices" as Barack Obama and the Democrats would like us to believe... this is about a system based upon profits derived from the exploitation of labor and the rape of Mother Nature.

No matter how you view the problem, the capitalist system comes out the culprit.

We can do better... with socialism.

The real trick here is to build the kind of movement which can get back the wealth these "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs" have already stolen, prevent them from stealing even more and put that wealth towards universal social programs designed to improve the standard of living for everyone.

The foreclosures and evictions must be halted.

All student debts should be forgiven--- this will release immense purchasing power for people to begin buying what they need putting people back to work.

Massive public works programs must be undertaken to get people back to work at jobs paying real living wages creating programs of lasting value for the American people. We can do this by closing down the more than 800 U.S. foreign military bases which only serve to keep people in other countries under the thumbs of "profit-seeking investors and entrepreneurs" and redirect the resources towards creating 800 public health care centers spread out across this country to keep people healthy and get them well when sick--- no fees, no premiums.

We can bring the failing steel and auto industries under public ownership through democratic nationalization and put people to work creating what we need for an environmentally friendly and green socialist economy.

As Minnesota State Senator David J. Tomassoni has so astutely observed as he brought forward the "Minnesota People's Bailout:"
We need to work our way out of his economic mess not try to buy or spend our way out.

Very good advice for getting our country on the high road to a bright socialist future as the dark grey clouds of capitalism threaten to plunge our country--- and the world--- into deathly darkness.

It is now obvious that if working people do not act quickly there are some very powerful, extreme right-wing forces in this country just eagerly waiting to make their play for power and if they are allowed to make this grab for power we will not recognize our country the day after.

This is class war.

Working people are going to have to engage in some very quick self-educating to get up to speed on what is going down... the bankers and the bosses have been doing our thinking for us for far too long making all the decisions behind the closed doors of corporate boardrooms, and that is a big part of our problems today.

There are those who would twist the present circumstances to mean that we have some kind of duty to support Barack Obama and all these schemes he is bringing forward at Wall Street's behest in the guise of "economic stimulus" and even a perverted concept of peace that we are supposed to support that is nothing more then an acceptance of a successful imperialist occupation of another country to rob a sovereign nation and a people of their oil; nothing could be further from the truth... this is a perverted view of what democracy and government is supposed to be about.

The politicians are supposed to work for us, not the other way around.

If ever there has been a time in history for working people to take to the streets to reclaim our country and our democracy behind the calls of "power to the people," that time is now!

Alan L. Maki

Obama seeks input of bank CEOs on recovery plans


Mar 27, 7:50 AM (ET)


WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama wants to hear from the chief executives of some of the country's biggest banks as he caps a week in which he clarified his overall plan for stabilizing the financial system.

The president was set to take the temperature of the bank CEOs on Friday at the White House. The session will be the latest in a series of such meetings Obama has had with financial industry representatives and business executives since taking office amid the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression.

The meeting follows a period marked by Obama's sharp language, and public outrage, over Wall Street excesses and $165 million in employee bonuses by American International Group, the large but troubled insurance company that has taken more than $170 billion in federal bailout funds.

It also comes days before Obama attends his first international summit, a meeting in London next week of the world's 20 major and developing economies, all struggling with the global recession.

This week, the administration unveiled its program to help banks clear their balance sheets of so-called "toxic assets," bad investments that are tying up capital and making it difficult for them to lend money. The administration also outlined its proposals to impose tighter regulations on the financial sector in an effort to avoid a repeat of the industry meltdown that contributed to the recession.

Obama in recent days has dialed down his rhetoric against AIG and Wall Street. The administration needs the industry's cooperation for its financial stability and financial regulation plans to work.

White House officials said Obama likes to hear directly from those who will be affected by his decisions.

"Our future is inextricably linked to these financial institutions, and their future is linked to the economic health of the country," said Valerie Jarrett, a senior adviser to Obama.

Press secretary Robert Gibbs said Obama looked forward to getting an update from the bankers on the activity they are seeing in real estate and commercial loans. They also are likely to discuss "stuff that's been in the news" in the past few weeks, including executive compensation, bonuses and "the notion that ... we have to change the culture of the way Wall Street works," he said.

Asked whether Obama would deliver as tough a message in private as he has in public, Gibbs replied, "Yes."

"The president isn't going to say one thing out here and a different thing in there," he said. "We're not going to get out of this financial crisis and we're not going to stabilize our financial system without healthy banks. That's part of what he hopes to talk to them about."

Larry Summers, Obama's chief economic adviser, said the meeting will focus on a broad approach to restoring the economy.

This week, the administration announced a plan to partner with private investors, the Federal Reserve and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. to take over up to $1 trillion in sour mortgage securities from banks. The goal is to help jump-start lending.

The administration also has proposed tighter regulation of the financial system, including giving the government broad power to take over major financial institutions that are not banks, such as insurance companies, like AIG, and hedge funds teetering on the brink of collapse.

Last week, Obama assailed AIG for "recklessness and greed" in its business practices.

He softened his tone a bit during a nationally televised news conference Tuesday night, saying the country "can't afford to demonize" every profit-seeking investor or entrepreneur because that is what fuels prosperity, and is what will get banks lending and the economy moving again.