America wins one despite it all

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Byron Angel
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Re: America wins one despite it all

Postby Byron Angel » Tue Jan 06, 2015 12:01 pm

GaryT - Government is itself a leading player in what you term the financial oligarchy.

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Garyt
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Re: America wins one despite it all

Postby Garyt » Tue Jan 06, 2015 9:05 pm

When you wish to discuss freedom, I think this is indeed a threat to our freedom.

Some contemporary authors have characterized current conditions in the United States as oligarchic in nature.[10][11] Simon Johnson wrote that "the reemergence of an American financial oligarchy is quite recent," a structure which he delineated as being the "most advanced" in the world.[12] Jeffrey A. Winters wrote that "oligarchy and democracy operate within a single system, and American politics is a daily display of their interplay."[13] Bernie Sanders (I-VT) opined in a 2010 The Nation article that an "upper-crust of extremely wealthy families are hell-bent on destroying the democratic vision of a strong middle-class which has made the United States the envy of the world. In its place they are determined to create an oligarchy in which a small number of families control the economic and political life of our country."[14] The top 1% in 2007 had a larger share of total income than at any time since 1928.[15] In 2011, according to PolitiFact and others, the top 400 wealthiest Americans "have more wealth than half of all Americans combined."[16][17][18][19]

French economist Thomas Piketty states in his 2013 book, Capital in the Twenty-First Century, that "the risk of a drift towards oligarchy is real and gives little reason for optimism about where the United States is headed."[20]

A study conducted by political scientists Martin Gilens of Princeton University, and Benjamin Page of Northwestern University, was released in April 2014,[21] which stated that their "analyses suggest that majorities of the American public actually have little influence over the policies our government adopts." It also suggested that "Americans do enjoy many features central to democratic governance, such as regular elections, freedom of speech and association, and a widespread (if still contested) franchise." Gilens and Page do not characterize the US as an "oligarchy" per se; however, they do apply the concept of "civil oligarchy" as used by Winters with respect to the US.

Most recently, Jeffrey Winters has posited a comparative theory of "oligarchy" in which the wealthiest citizens – even in a "civil oligarchy" like the United States – dominate policy concerning crucial issues of wealth- and income-protection.[22]

Gilens says that average citizens only get what they want if economic elites or interest groups also want it; that is, economic elites and interest groups are influential.[23]


Problem is it does not market it's concerns for "freedom" as well as the tea party spear headed conservative movement.

The Conservative infomercials package themselves well, stating in almost a subliminal way that conservatives love god, country, apple pie and baseball. And if you are not a conservative, you are an unpatriotic philandering atheist :D

I must say it is a very good job of marketing. As my friend has said, they do a very good job of making poor and middle class white americans think that they and the financial oligarchy have the same goals.

Maybe the only saving grace is that they have done a horrible job marketing themselves to minorities, which are now about 50% of the population. It's funny, they are at odds on almost their entire platform with most minorities. Of course, of you re-district effectively enough, you can still ensure enough pockets will be pro conservative.

northcape
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Re: America wins one despite it all

Postby northcape » Tue Jan 06, 2015 9:50 pm

Dave Saxton wrote:@ North Cape. You make some good points that I can not disagree too much with. I do think that Fracking is here to stay but it will have to roll with market forces and will influence the ebbs and tides of the market.


Definitely.

I am not an US citizen (although I lived there for some years and I enjoyed it a lot). Mainly for that reason, I don't really feel competent to comment on the political situation in the country. However, I have the impression that there is much more political polarisation than in many other (European) countries, e.g. the sharp distinction between opposer and advocates of a strong unified/centralised state (I guess Republicans vs. Democrats in a simplified way). With regard to hydraulic fracturing, a part of its success story is due to the very strong and continuous support from the federal government, e.g. making it a top-priority on the national energy agenda and providing budgets for a lot of academic research. Within a larger context, that illustrates to me why the US economy is mostly doing better than the European economy: Once you decide on a certain path, there is strong support from the top level, which in turn demonstrates the need (or the good sides) for a strong government. Besides (mainly) geologic reasons (most of our tight reservoirs in Europe are much deeper than in the US), the indecisiveness of European politicians is also a reason why hydraulic fracturing never took off here.

Garyt
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Re: America wins one despite it all

Postby Garyt » Wed Jan 07, 2015 12:28 am

ernie Sanders (I-VT) opined in a 2010 The Nation article that an "upper-crust of extremely wealthy families are hell-bent on destroying the democratic vision of a strong middle-class which has made the United States the envy of the world. In its place they are determined to create an oligarchy in which a small number of families control the economic and political life of our country."[14] The top 1% in 2007 had a larger share of total income than at any time since 1928.


I find this interesting, as the great depression followed the last time this much wealth was concentrated in the hands of a few.

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Dave Saxton
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Re: America wins one despite it all

Postby Dave Saxton » Wed Jan 07, 2015 9:48 pm

Just reading yesterday's newspaper.

The local rig count has reduced from 62 on Nov 1st to 56 as of yesterday. But that is not abnormal. A year ago yesterday the rig count was 55 and it reduced to 52 in Feb of last year. Light Rocky Mountain crude has been trading at $42 per barrel since Sept. Light crude is the same type that is extracted from fracking ( that is why older refiners can handle it better than the heavier stuff).
Entering a night sea battle is an awesome business.The enveloping darkness, hiding the enemy's.. seems a living thing, malignant and oppressive.Swishing water at the bow and stern mark an inexorable advance toward an unknown destiny.


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