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    Like Mitt Romney, the world’s super rich are hiding at least $21 trillion offshore →

    CBS News“With about 55,000 inhabitants, the Cayman Islands should not be a well-known name in the rest of the world, but the tiny Caribbean territory has become famous as a tax haven for the world’s super rich. According to a new report, the Caymans – along with the other dozen or so international havens for wealth like Switzerland and Bermuda – are the holders of so much of the world’s capital, entire regional economies could be moved on it. The Tax Justice Network has just released a report estimating that the world’s tax havens house anywhere from $21 trillion to $32 trillion of money that governments cannot tax.” 

    It has been revealed that Mitt Romney keeps part of his fortune in all three tax havens mentioned above: the CaymansSwitzerland, and Bermuda. And he wants to be president.

    — 1 year ago with 2 notes
    #1. tax cuts for the rich  #2. austerity for the rest of us  #class war  #income redistribution  #Mitt Romney  #news  #politics  #Republican Party  #Tea Party  #unemployment  #vote!  #war on the middle class  #bermuda  #caymans  #hiding money  #international tax havens  #not like us  #one percent  #plutocracy  #Switzerland  #tax free money  #tax havens  #the world's wealthy 
    The Walton’s wealth equals the bottom 40% of Americans: how the rich amass fortunes

    According to Pat Garofalo at Think Progress, Walmart heirs have a combined wealth equal to the bottom 40% of Americans combined:

    “Last year, Sylvia Allegretto, a labor economist at the Center on Wage and Employment Dynamics, found that as of 2007, the Walton family — heirs to the Walmart fortune — had a net worth equal to that of the bottom 30 percent of Americans. And due to the effects of the Great Recession that ratio has gotten substantially worse. New Federal Reserve data analyzed by both Allegretto and Josn Bivens at the Economic Policy Institute shows that the Waltons now hold as much wealth as the bottom 40 percent of Americans combined.”

    So? Didn’t they ‘earn’ their wealth — should we punish the Walton family for being this wildly successful? As Garofalo points out, the federal government (i.e. the Republican Party / tax laws) have helped to redistribute money towards the Walton fortune as much as anything:

    “At the same time that the Waltons have amassed an ever larger fortune, Congress decided to cut the estate tax, a policy for which the Waltons have been pushingfor years. And now that the estate tax cut is in place, conservatives are doing everything they can to ensure it doesn’t go away, allowing the Waltons to amass even larger amounts of wealth.”

    And as president, Mitt Romney would like to redistribute even more money to the Waltons by implementing further tax cuts for those in the elite one percent class (himself included).

    Further, let’s not forget that the Walton family fortune has been built on the backs of their low-wage employees:

    “[Walmart] employees on average take home pay of under $250 a week. The salary for full-time employees (called “associates”) is $6 to $7.50 an hour for 28-40 hours a week, which is typical in the discount retail industry. This pay scale places employees with families below the poverty line, with the majority of employees’ children qualifying for free lunch at school. When closely examined, this amounts to a form of corporate welfare, as the taxpayer subsidizes the low salaries. One-third are part-time employees – limited to less than 28 hours of work per week – and are not eligible for benefits.”

    So every taxpayer, in any community where a Walmart is located, has helped to subsidize the Walton family’s employees — and by extension, the Walton family fortune.  Instead of expecting them to pay their workers a living wage and provide affordable benefits (remember labor unions?), taxpayers have helped the Waltons pocket a selfishly unequal amount of their profits. Profits, by the way, which are created by selling goods from other countries, like China:

    “Despite a well-publicized “Made in the U.S.A.” campaign, 85 percent of the stores’ items are made overseas, often in Third World sweatshops. In fact, only after Wal-Mart’s “Buy American” ad campaign was in full swing did the company become the country’s largest importer of Chinese goods in any industry. By taking its orders abroad, Wal-Mart has forced many U.S. manufacturers out of business.”

    The Walton family is a basic story of how many in the elite one percent acquire their fortunes (ingenuity and hard work or by cheating with a lot of help from others including all levels of government). It’s this kind of information, ultimately, that people like Mitt Romney would like to withhold from public scrutiny. One doesn’t willingly reveal how one’s fortune was made, where it came from, who was sacrificed, and how it’s being used now by turning over one’s tax returns to the rabble. That could turn out to be rather distasteful.

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    — 1 year ago with 10 notes
    #politics  #one percent  #waltons  #mitt romney  #tax returns 

    Video: Romney sings: OFA ad

    Mitt Romney sings America the Beautiful (warning: Romney sings), accompanied by facts from his long career as a vulture capitalist and plutocratic elitist.

    — 1 year ago
    #politics  #lol  #america the beautiful  #bain capital  #elitist  #LOL  #Mitt Romney  #mitt sings  #obama for america  #one percent  #plutocrat  #President Obama  #Republicans  #romney will eat america  #vulture capitalism 
    Mitt Romney: A person should “get as much education as they can afford” →

    “I want to make sure that we keep America a place of opportunity, where everyone has a fair shot. They get as much education as they can afford…” —Mitt Romney on Wednesday, advocating for a class-based society of higher education, based on the wealth a person was born into as opposed to an individual’s talent and intelligence.

    New America: The math genius who’s poor shouldn’t go to college, but should spend his/her life shining the shoes of people like Romney’s sons (or Mitt and Marie Antoinette themselves) who are born with trust funds and inheritances. Because, let’s be honest, who among us couldn’t “afford college” without financial help from programs or services like student loans, scholarships, and grants? Not all of us can borrow money for college from our parents.

    And what a great way to enslave entire generations into a minimum wage existence — to the great advantage of corporations and the one percent.

    — 1 year ago with 19 notes
    #class war  #economy  #income redistribution  #news  #politics  #unemployment  #vote!  #war on the middle class  #99%  #and this isn't a class war?  #emperor romney  #fuck you mitt  #GOP  #king of bain  #one percent  #plutocracy  #Really  #Republicans  #thunderdome  #unbelievable  #you should get as much education as you can afford 
    We have exactly 155 days: Obama or Romney →

    Romney’s PR HQ (Buzzfeed politics) has a roundup of every emo firebagger they could find, who’s had a ‘sad’ since the 2010 elections (which they didn’t bother to vote in). They want us all to know that their shattered hopes and dreams are the reason they’re not contributing to Obama’s campaign this time around:

    Most Obama Donors Not Giving Again

    “In 2008, more than 550,000 gave more than $200 to Barack Obama, entering their names in the longest list of individual donors ever seen in American politics,” Ben Smith reports.

    “But now, as Obama struggles to keep pace with his 2008 fundraising clip, that list offers a cross-section of Democratic disappointment and alienation. According to a BuzzFeed analysis of campaign finance data, 88% of the people who gave $200 or more in 2008 — 537,806 people — have not yet given that sum this year. And this drop-off isn’t simply an artifact of timing. A full 87% of the people who gave $200 — the sum that triggers an itemized report to the Federal Elections Commission — through April of 2008, 182,078 people, had not contributed by the end of last month.”

    I don’t know if these people are actually ‘real’ or more like urban legends — like the woman quoted in the article who says she wanted a more expansive health care bill: “We were a little upset about healthcare. I really, really wanted that public option,” Mrs. Leitzinger said (Really?! Still? I guess Obama should’ve just put that law through himself–who needs Congress?) — but what I do know is that there will be only two choices on November 6: Obama or Romney. And, sorry kids, as much as you hate hearing it — not choosing IS choosing.

    In the next five months because of Citizens United, corporate interests and the one percent are going to try to buy themselves a president by injecting $1 BILLION into super PACs for national advertising to sway independents and moderates over to Romney. And as sure as the sun will rise in the morning, every fundamentalist, teabagger, and rightwinger — all the social conservatives — will be in line to vote for the Republican. Serious question: just how far do you think your progressive ideals and beliefs will go with “President Romney”? Remember George W — multiply him by Tea Party.

    We only have five months. I haven’t gotten everything I wanted from Obama — but who’s ever gotten everything they want from one person in the entire history of the world?  I am able to realize that I’ve been happier with what he’s done, with what he represents, and especially with his potential than I ever would have been with McCain/Palin (that still makes me  shudder!). Four more years of Obama extends his potential — and ours. The fact of the matter is that Mitt Romney doesn’t care about the things I care about — he doesn’t even pretend to care. No I don’t want to extend tax cuts for the wealthiest, paid for by cutting programs and services to the neediest, with austerity for the rest of us — the not-wealthy. There’s no way Romney would ever consider issues or policies that I think are important. And there’s the deciding factor for me.

    Because of this article, I contributed today and will continue through November 5. Maybe you should think about it too.

    Do you really want to take a chance of waking up on November 7 with Romney as the winner?

    — 1 year ago
    #news  #politics  #vote!  #2010  #campaign  #Citizens United  #Democrats  #donate  #donors  #emo progs  #firebaggers  #grassroots  #herding cats  #Mitt Romney  #not choosing is choosing  #one percent  #plutocracy  #President Obama  #Republicans  #super pacs 
    Romney economics: when a fair wage for American workers is considered ‘greed’ →

    Fox News and Mitt Romney, as representatives for the one percent, rely on the Republican base voters to be not only dumb and uninformed, but self-hating as well. How else do you explain support (by people who aren’t wealthy) for the idea that fair wages and benefits for working Americans is “greed”? This morning, Ed Gillespie, an adviser to Mitt Romney, told Fox News host Chris Wallace that Scott Walker winning in Wisconsin would mean:

    “I think the statement to big labor and to big government employee unions, government worker unions is that you can’t be too greedy,” Gillespie explained. “You need to understand that times are tough and a lot of these legacy costs that you imposed are due for some reforms and some restructuring.”

    It’s interesting that Romney’s adviser calls it ‘greed’ when unions and workers want to preserve their wages and benefits. Especially when you consider the tactics ofvulture capitalism, practiced by Mitt Romney during his time at Bain Capital, on long-term employees of companies acquired by Bain (fire them, hire some back at lower wages). Support for this kind of thinking will turn us into a third-world economy yet. Here’s proof: the WSJ reported this week that flat wages in the US are helping a manufacturing rebound:

    The wage lag is a key factor contributing to the rebounding competitiveness of U.S. industry. A recent uptick in factory employment and the return of some production to U.S. shores from abroad both added jobs that probably otherwise wouldn’t exist. But sluggish wages also are squeezing workers’ incomes and spending. That, in turn, hurts retailers who target middle-income earners and restrains the vigor of the economic recovery. “The U.S. has held manufacturing wages in check while there has been strong wage growth in China and moderate wage growth in Mexico,” says economist Gordon Hanson of the University of California, San Diego, referring to two of the U.S.’s biggest lower-wage competitors.

    China and Mexico’s wages are growing while U.S. wages are shrinking. Apparently that’s the only way corporations who got rich on American soil are willing to bring jobs back to American soil. Soon everyone will have a job, if they’re not too “greedy” and are willing to work for $1.00 a day.

    Oh, and of course this is not greed.

    — 1 year ago with 32 notes
    #class war  #income redistribution  #news  #politics  #unemployment  #vote!  #war on the middle class  #American workers  #ampad  #bain capital  #chris wallace  #ed gillespie  #Fox News  #greed  #Mitt Romney  #one percent  #organized labor  #plutocracy  #Republicans  #scott walker  #unions  #vulture capitalism  #wisconsin 
    Axelrod: A handful of plutocrats are trying to buy the United States – “There was a report this morning that the Republican Super PACs, apart from Romney and apart from his own super PAC, intend to spend a billion dollars in this campaign setting up shadow state organizations—district-wide organizations—as well as running media. So a handful of plutocrats of billionaires with a special interest agenda are going to try and buy this government in this election, and the stakes of that are pretty profound. I’m obviously concerned about the implications for our race, but we’ve braced ourselves and we’ve been talking about this for some time. It’s a concern. It’s one of my big concerns. But for congressional candidates, it’s gotta be a nightmare. We saw in the last election, in the last 3 weeks of those campaigns, Super PACs swooped in and spent huge amounts of money in the final 3 weeks to influence those congressional races and turned a lot of races with their money. I think you can anticipate that in spades this year.” – Raw Story
GOP Groups Plan $1 BILLION Push for Romney (that’s billion, with a B) – Political Wire
image: realpolitiks

    Axelrod: A handful of plutocrats are trying to buy the United States“There was a report this morning that the Republican Super PACs, apart from Romney and apart from his own super PAC, intend to spend a billion dollars in this campaign setting up shadow state organizations—district-wide organizations—as well as running media. So a handful of plutocrats of billionaires with a special interest agenda are going to try and buy this government in this election, and the stakes of that are pretty profound. I’m obviously concerned about the implications for our race, but we’ve braced ourselves and we’ve been talking about this for some time. It’s a concern. It’s one of my big concerns. But for congressional candidates, it’s gotta be a nightmare. We saw in the last election, in the last 3 weeks of those campaigns, Super PACs swooped in and spent huge amounts of money in the final 3 weeks to influence those congressional races and turned a lot of races with their money. I think you can anticipate that in spades this year.”  Raw Story

    • GOP Groups Plan $1 BILLION Push for Romney (that’s billion, with a B)Political Wire

    image: realpolitiks

    — 1 year ago with 14 notes
    #news  #politics  #mitt romney  #president obama  #david axelrod  #romney economics  #republicans  #citizens united  #how to buy the government  #billionaires  #plutocracy  #one percent  #money  #buy a president 
    Obama’s political advisor David Axelrod dissected Romney’s record in Massachusetts between 2003 and 2007 in a campaign memo…”Mitt Romney applied the economic philosophy he learned in the private sector to disastrous results as governor of Massachusetts,” Axelrod wrote.”It’s the same formula that benefited a few, but crashed our economy in the first place and undermined security for the middle class. Massachusetts couldn’t afford Romney Economics, and neither can the American economy.” Axelrod said that under Romney, Massachusetts plunged from 36th to 47th out of 50 states in job creation, and despite promises to the contrary raised taxes and fees on middle class families and small businesses. “Meanwhile, he cut taxes for millionaires like himself, handing over more than $75 million to just 278 of the wealthiest in Massachusetts.” —FRANCE 24
image: mittromeny

    Obama’s political advisor David Axelrod dissected Romney’s record in Massachusetts between 2003 and 2007 in a campaign memo…”Mitt Romney applied the economic philosophy he learned in the private sector to disastrous results as governor of Massachusetts,” Axelrod wrote.”It’s the same formula that benefited a few, but crashed our economy in the first place and undermined security for the middle class. Massachusetts couldn’t afford Romney Economics, and neither can the American economy.” Axelrod said that under Romney, Massachusetts plunged from 36th to 47th out of 50 states in job creation, and despite promises to the contrary raised taxes and fees on middle class families and small businesses. “Meanwhile, he cut taxes for millionaires like himself, handing over more than $75 million to just 278 of the wealthiest in Massachusetts.” —FRANCE 24

    image: mittromeny

    — 1 year ago with 2 notes
    #news  #politics  #mitt romney  #president obama  #david axelrod  #governor romney  #massachusetts  #romney economics  #class war  #tax cuts for the wealthy  #austerity for the rest of us  #income redistribution  #republicans  #democrats  #one percent  #plutocracy 
    GOP Groups Plan $1 BILLION Push for Romney (that’s billion, with a B) — “Republican super PACs and other outside groups shaped by a loose network of prominent conservatives — including Karl Rove, the Koch brothers and Tom Donohue of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce — plan to spend roughly $1 billion on November’s elections for the White House and control of Congress,” Politico reports. “That total includes previously undisclosed plans for newly aggressive spending by the Koch brothers, who are steering funding to build sophisticated, county-by-county operations in key states… Koch-related organizations plan to spend about $400 million ahead of the 2012 elections — twice what they had been expected to commit.” – Political Wire
Right-Wing Billionaires Behind Mitt Romney (and the GOP’s capitulation to Big Money) – In the primary season alone, Romney’s rich friends invested $52 million in his Super PAC, Restore Our Future – a number that’s expected to more than double in the coming months. This unprecedented infusion of money from America’s monied elites underscores the radical transformation of the Republican Party, which has made defending the interests of 0.0001 percent the basis of its entire platform.“Money buys power,” the Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman observed recently, “and the increasing wealth of a tiny minority has effectively bought the allegiance of one of our two major political parties.” In short, the political polarization and gridlock in Washington are a direct result of the GOP’s capitulation to Big Money. – Tim Dickinson | Rolling Stone
Mitt Romney is meeting with Sheldon Adelson — the billionaire casino magnate and big Newt-Gingrich supporting super-PAC donor — in Las Vegas on Tuesday, according to CBS News and CNN. …Adelson and his wife, Miriam, gave $20 million to Winning Our Future, the pro-Gingrich super PAC. — HuffPo

    GOP Groups Plan $1 BILLION Push for Romney (that’s billion, with a B) — “Republican super PACs and other outside groups shaped by a loose network of prominent conservatives — including Karl Rove, the Koch brothers and Tom Donohue of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce — plan to spend roughly $1 billion on November’s elections for the White House and control of Congress,” Politico reports. “That total includes previously undisclosed plans for newly aggressive spending by the Koch brothers, who are steering funding to build sophisticated, county-by-county operations in key states… Koch-related organizations plan to spend about $400 million ahead of the 2012 elections — twice what they had been expected to commit.” – Political Wire

    • Right-Wing Billionaires Behind Mitt Romney (and the GOP’s capitulation to Big Money) – In the primary season alone, Romney’s rich friends invested $52 million in his Super PAC, Restore Our Future – a number that’s expected to more than double in the coming months. This unprecedented infusion of money from America’s monied elites underscores the radical transformation of the Republican Party, which has made defending the interests of 0.0001 percent the basis of its entire platform.“Money buys power,” the Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman observed recently, “and the increasing wealth of a tiny minority has effectively bought the allegiance of one of our two major political parties.” In short, the political polarization and gridlock in Washington are a direct result of the GOP’s capitulation to Big Money. – Tim Dickinson | Rolling Stone
    • Mitt Romney is meeting with Sheldon Adelson — the billionaire casino magnate and big Newt-Gingrich supporting super-PAC donor — in Las Vegas on Tuesday, according to CBS News and CNN. …Adelson and his wife, Miriam, gave $20 million to Winning Our Future, the pro-Gingrich super PAC. — HuffPo
    — 1 year ago with 1 note
    #news  #politics  #how to buy the white house  #citizens united  #mitt romney  #super pacs  #billionaires  #one percent  #plutocracy  #republicans  #gop  #sheldon adelson 
    Union-busting, plutocrat style →

    (Because union jobs pay better than minimum wage) – An anti-union construction trade group is targeting three vulnerable House Republican freshmen with a barrage of negative advertising over a series of labor-friendly votes. Reps. Jon Runyan (N.J.), Joe Walsh (Ill.) and Robert Dold (Ill.) already face tough re-election battles that could be complicated by a spate of online ads from the Associated Builders and Contractors accusing them of breaking campaign promises. The trade association, which helped fuel the Republican takeover of the House in 2010 with more than $1.1 million in campaign contributions, is trying to counter an executive order issued by President Barack Obama it contends gives unionized contractors an unfair advantage in bidding wars for federal projects. – Roll Call

    — 1 year ago with 9 notes
    #news  #politics  #one percent  #plutocracy  #busting unions  #labor unions  #organized labor  #middle class  #class war  #war on the middle class 
    Top CEO pay would take 3,489 years for a typical worker to earn →

    David Simon of Simon Property received a pay package worth more than $137 million for last year, and the typical CEO took home $9.6 million, according to an analysis by The Associated Press… HOW LONG IT TAKES OTHERS TO MAKE THAT MUCH: A minimum wage worker – paid $7.25 per hour, as some workers at Simon malls are – would have to work one month shy of 9,096 years to make what Simon made last year. A person making the national median salary, $39,312 by AP calculations, would have to work 3,489 years… – AP News

    Note: and as we’ve learned from stories about Bain Capital, the plutocrats idea of job “creation” is laying off long-time workers and hiring some of them back at minimum wage. Vote GOP! 

    — 1 year ago with 1 note
    #news  #politics  #income inequality  #income redistribution  #class war  #war on the middle class  #plutocracy  #ceo  #one percent  #tax cuts for the wealthy  #austerity for the rest of us 
    SUPPORTING THOSE TROOPS! Romney on homeless veterans: “Let them milk cows.” — By all accounts Mitt Romney’s 1994 trip to the nation’s largest homeless shelter was accurately described by the Boston Globe as “not one of the brighter moments of his campaign for US senator.” Romney was visiting the homeless shelter, located in Boston, by invitation of the shelter’s executive director Ken Smith. […] Smith explained that the State of Massachusetts allocated $2.37 per day twice a day for each homeless veteran’s meal. Since the amount was so meager, the shelter had trouble providing each veteran with a carton of milk at each meal. Romney responded, “Well Ken, maybe you can teach the vets to milk cows.” Romney then walked out the door. – Mitt Romney’s Milk Gaffe
Support the troops! 

    SUPPORTING THOSE TROOPS! Romney on homeless veterans: “Let them milk cows.” — By all accounts Mitt Romney’s 1994 trip to the nation’s largest homeless shelter was accurately described by the Boston Globe as “not one of the brighter moments of his campaign for US senator.” Romney was visiting the homeless shelter, located in Boston, by invitation of the shelter’s executive director Ken Smith. […] Smith explained that the State of Massachusetts allocated $2.37 per day twice a day for each homeless veteran’s meal. Since the amount was so meager, the shelter had trouble providing each veteran with a carton of milk at each meal. Romney responded, “Well Ken, maybe you can teach the vets to milk cows.” Romney then walked out the door. – Mitt Romney’s Milk Gaffe

    Support the troops! 

    — 1 year ago with 32 notes
    #news  #politics  #1994  #mitt romney  #massachusetts  #let them milk cows  #homeless vets  #veterans  #support the troops  #milk  #milk incident  #milk gaffe  #plutocrat  #one percent 
    Obama has to Explain Why Fairness is Essential to Growth (and Why Some Democrats Have to Stop Believing Otherwise)

    Fairness isn’t inconsistent with growth; it’s essential to it. The only way the economy can grow and create more jobs is if prosperity is more widely shared. The key reason why the recovery is so anemic is so much income and wealth are now concentrated at the top [that] America’s the vast middle class no longer has the purchasing power necessary to boost the economy. The richest 1 percent of Americans save about half their incomes, while most of the rest of us save between 6 and 10 percent. That shouldn’t be surprising. Being rich means you already have most of what you want and need. That second yacht isn’t nearly as exciting as was the first. It follows that when, as now, the top 1 percent rakes in more than 20 percent of total income — at least twice the share it had 30 years ago — there’s insufficient demand for all the goods and services the economy is capable of producing at or near full employment. And without demand, the economy doesn’t grow or generate nearly enough jobs. – Robert Reich

    — 1 year ago with 2 notes
    #politics  #robert reich  #president obama  #income inequality  #fairness  #growth  #essential  #democrats  #republicans  #one percent  #class war  #war on the middle class  #job creators