American Samizdat

Thursday, February 14, 2008. *

Must listen to Democracy Now interview with David Cay Johnston. In case you're wondering why poor people can't move back to New Orleans and why the Hill District gets nothing for development while the Pens get millions in tax breaks...

An excerpt:

MY GOODMAN: Explain the wealth transfer.

DAVID CAY JOHNSTON: Well, I was struck, listening to the program from Kenya, where they talked about the president and his power to give money to people, give land, and that’s why many people identify with it. We have created in the United States, largely in the last thirty years, a whole series of programs—a few of them explicit, many of them deeply hidden—that take money from the pockets of the poor and the middle class and upper middle class and funnel it to the wealthiest people in America. And among the biggest recipients of these subsidies are the wealthiest family America, the Waltons; George Steinbrenner; Donald Trump; a whole host of healthcare billionaires. And these are policies that either have not been reported on or the news reporting on them generally has not informed people about what they really are.

Preemptive and Justified Nuclear Strike Against Trevor's Quite Silly and Irritatingly Inane "Phil Hasn't Responded So I Won's Our BET" Personal Psyops Propaganda Commentary When I Have In Fact Responded Dozens of Times Until I Sensibly Realized That This Wasn't Getting Either Of Us Anywhere....

1. Our bet seems to have fallen on one argument that neither of us are willing to do the work to prove or disprove based on the fact that we don't feel like doing it and/or we have lives. This blocking point is: We do not agree on the parameters of the bet. It is my understanding that you have to prove that you're not a de facto segregationist from your comments and that you have to do the work. It is your understanding that I have to do it. Never the twain shall meet. Let's move on.

2. You have also misconstrued my statement that you are a segregationist. I never flat out said that you were a segregationist. I stated, very clearly I thought, that you were a de facto segregationist because you didn't immediately come out in strong unambiguous support of Brown v. Board because people who know a little bit about the law--and apparently this excludes you--know that this law led to the laws that ended forced and legal segregation in the United States. Not a small thing. (I might also add that Brown v Board and its subsequent laws would be the basis, in all probability, for equality under the law for gay Americans like yourself. Shouldn't you know that?)

3. The reason I started the Real Economics for Trevor line of posts is that I'm actually curious as to what your perceptions of Capitalism are. You seem to be a fundamentalist capitalist who doesn't question or understand the damage that American style capitalism actually does in this world. I mean, I moved away from Christianity because evidence and reason simply didn't support its view of the world. It just struck me not as the divine word but a book written by a buncha guys, some of which would be revealed to be hustlers and crackpots in the Mormon or scientology vein with modern eyes and cameras. This post, for better or worse, defines my world view about American capitalism, as do my other posts. Your job, if you really believe in this libertarian Hayek view of the world is to tell me where its wrong. When you simply repeat this myth about this bet--that I do not agree that I've lost because we don't agree on the parameters-- it strikes me not just as dishonest, but quite frankly somewhat cowardly. Either you can defend your positions based on reason or facts or you can't. I also think that this would prove to be an interesting debate for the site, which would enrich it. Something that your repetition of the bet with your Patriots Win Superbowl tone do not...

4. This is yet another opportunity to defend capitalism or to post falsehoods in the comments section. I will respond to critiques to the post but probably not the bet. (See 1 and 2 as to why.)

5. Boom.

Labels: ,

posted by Philip Shropshire at 11:54 PM
Post a Comment

Site Meter

Creative Commons License