Monday, November 7, 2011

US continues its fall to the bottom

Shared by the PoliticalProf:


dr.primrose said...

An op-ed piece in today's L.A. Times on this subject by an emeritus professor of history at UCLA - The wealth divide. She sort of wanders around talking about (1) the disparity has always been there, (2) there's a big difference between inequality of income and inequality of assets, and (3) this sort of thing seems to be a bad thing. At the end of the day, I'm not sure what her ultimate point is. But I cite this as part of the continuing discussion on this subject.

JCF said...

I read this thinking, why aren't we (Yanks) all looking to emigrate? Sneaking over the border to Canada, becoming boat people to Europe? To Australia? Etc, etc, etc? Anywhere??? [Except for Greece, Chile, Mexico and Turkey]

Counterlight said...

I think the reason we are not emigrating is because our troubles would only follow us. Besides, the plutocrats are international now. Austerity! Austerity! Austerity! (for everyone except the banks) is all you hear in Europe these days.

dr.primrose said...

L.A. Times column today on Republican hypocrisy of favoring the tax for universal telecom service but opposing universal health care coverage - GOP sees disconnect between universal phone, healthcare coverage.

"Conservatives tend to become apoplectic at the thought of the government requiring people to pay for health insurance or any form of public program designed to provide universal coverage.

"Yet most of those same conservatives — including Republican lawmakers — are perfectly at ease with the idea of requiring that all phone users pay a fee intended to provide universal coverage for telecom services.

"This disparity (or hypocrisy) was on full display as the one Republican member of the Federal Communications Commission joined his three Democratic colleagues recently in voting to overhaul a decades-old system of providing subsidies for phone service in rural areas.

"Those subsidies — $4.5 billion worth — will now be dedicated primarily to ensuring that rural communities have access to high-speed Internet services.


"So why doesn't that same thinking apply to healthcare?

"'The philosophical basis is the same,' said Art Brodsky, a spokesman for the digital rights group Public Knowledge. 'Everyone should be covered and everyone should have to pay for it.'

Yet many Republicans don't see it that way. Sens. Orrin G. Hatch (R-Utah), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), John Hoeven (R-N.D.) and John Thune (R-S.D.) recently joined a bipartisan group of lawmakers voicing support for the FCC's vote on the Universal Services Fund.

"But each of these Republican senators is also on record as opposing the healthcare reform law championed by President Obama. As Hatch put it, 'I think to allow it to be even partially implemented is a mistake. We should repeal it.'


"... Brodsky at Public Knowledge said it's hard to distinguish between the case for universal healthcare coverage and universal phone coverage.

"'Many of these guys who scream about socialized medicine represent largely rural states, and without these subsidies, there wouldn't be universal phone and broadband service,' he said. 'Basically, the phone subsidies are a form of corporate socialism.'


"The public cost of universal health coverage would run significantly more than a few bucks a month. But when it comes to mandates, the principle is the same: spreading the risks and expenses evenly among all members of society.

"Conservatives grow bug-eyed at the thought of such a thing. They say that healthcare is a privilege, not a right, and that no one can be forced to pay for insurance.

"It's a ludicrous distinction. Either the government is tasked with ensuring fairness and equality in society, or it isn't."

JCF said...

Thank you, dr p. Very revealing.

[wv, "goonasm". Just cuz it's funny! ;-D]