Sunday, January 24, 2016

ELECTING REPUBLICANS; A FORMULA FOR DISASTER

Electing Republicans to political office is a disaster waiting to happen. Here's why.

The Republicans have a formula for governing that can be broken down in 3 ways;

#1: CUT TAXES for the rich, of course which has the disastrous affects of creating INCOME INEQUALITY where the rich get richer while the working middle class gets poorer.

If you have 5 minutes to spare it might be worth your while watching this video; 

Wealth Inequality in America  

# 2: CUT THE BUDGET which for Republicans means cutting and/or reducing "not for profit" social programs like healthcare, where a large number of RED states have refused to expand healthcare services to the working class and poor; (Here's a look at the 50 states health care coverage.)

Weaken consumer and environmental protection agencies that result in disasters like we are seeing in Flint MI where again the working class and poor are targeted;

Michigan’s pollution crisis

Republicans have no problem with a bloated budget when it comes to "for profit" projects like the Military Industrial Complex (MIC) that funds a juggernaut military machine that is larger than the military of most of the rest of the world's developed countries "combined."

Another "for profit" program Republicans support and fund is the Prison Industrial Complex (PIC)
where the focus is on "retention" and "recidivism" (keeping the beds full) in order to make a profit;

According to statistics from 1990 to 2005, a new state or federal correctional facility was built in the United States once every 10 days, amounting to around 544 new prisons over 15 years.

More about US prisons:
  • Twenty-five percent of the total world prison population is comprised of US prisoners, even though the US makes up just 5% of the total global population. In 2013, there were about 2.2 million adults in local, state, or federal custody in the United States.

  • There are 770,000 people who work for US prisons in some capacity (such as parole officers, prison guards, construction, health care, and more) - almost as many as work in the automobile manufacturing industry.
 
#3: CUT GOVERNMENT which for Republicans means weakening our "representative" Democratic form of  government" and strengthening an  "elitist" Plutocratic form of government.

In a true democracy big and strong government that represents ALL of it's citizens; rich, working, and poor, alike is a prerequisite to a strong and productive society. A small weaken government that panders to a select elitist few (the rich) is the preferred choice for Republicans who have been diligent on degrading the political system with things like Gerrymandering and Citizens United. 

It's not that Republicans are anti-government more than they are anti-democratic.
  
It's time Americans stop and think about what Republicans mean when they say they want to cut taxes, reduce the budget deficit, and rid us of big government. Because it's not so much what they say, but what it means to the average American that's important if we are to preserve our way of life. 

It's all about money: 

You might say the US Congress is a bit compromised.

The same lucrative financial ties that exist between politicians and the "health-care" industry exist between politicians and for-profit prison companies, oil companies, gun companies, sugar companies, other big agribusiness and Wall Street's bankers, advisers, and hedge fund and private equity managers.
  
Congress is inundated with money spent by very large corporations in return for political action designed to maximize corporate profits.

Pfizer, one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world, gave $2,217,066 in political campaign donations during the 2014 election cycle (the most recent year for which data is available), and $9,483,000 more in political lobbying. As of 2014, 40 members of Congress held stock in the pharmaceutical giant.

Congress also happens to be doing nothing to stop Pfizer from charging Americans some of the highest drug prices in the world.

Bristol-Myers Squibb is another pharmaceutical behemoth charging Americans inflated drug prices while funneling money to Congress. In 2014, the company spent $259,450 in campaign contributions, and $2,745,000 in lobbying. Twenty-five members of Congress hold stock in Bristol-Myers Squibb.
Another Big Pharma company, Johnson & Johnson, gave $757,788 in political campaign contributions in 2014, and spent $5,980,000 more in lobbying. Forty members of Congress hold stock in Johnson & Johnson.

While millions of Americans fight to afford their medications, 11 corporate leviathans (all of which donate to or lobby Congress) have wrested more than $711 billion in profits for their investors.
As members of Congress constitute some of those investors, the lax regulation that allows the American people to be extorted is actually good for the politicians in charge of representing the best interests of the people.

This throws into light the reason why, unlike any other body of legislators in the world, US federal lawmakers do not regulate or restrain massive pharmaceutical companies from engaging in predatory pricing practices.
  As instance after instance shows, Congress does not, in fact, represent the people of the United States, but rich CEOs. On both sides of the aisle, campaign donations, super PACs and corporate lobbying have morphed this country into an oligarchy, controlled by the wealthy few.
As Sanders says, the issue is not that "the Republicans and Democrats hate each other. That's a mythology from the media."

The real problem, which Sanders has correctly identified, is that "Congress is owned by big money and refuses to do what the American people want them to do."