Sunday, November 20, 2011

Why I Support The Occupy Movement

I am a Conservative—and proud of it.

I am against abortion, including in the case of rape or incest. I don’t believe in any form of entitlement program, much less the concept of a welfare state. I am opposed to progressive income taxes—and in fact am against using the tax code as a vehicle to foment or discourage any social goal, as I think it inevitably leads to the tax code being gamed by interested parties (as has indeed happened with the U.S. tax code, beholden to paid lobbyists who have carved out so many loopholes that it looks more like a sieve than a tax code). Thus I’m in favor of a flat tax: Zero-percent for citizens, 20% for corporations.

I am in favor of a reduced government, a reduced military presence, compulsory military service, and a compulsory national guard system requiring 100% citizen participation, similar to the Swiss model. I am completely against foreign military adventurism, foreign military bases, and foreign military aid.

I believe that the government should be the enforcer of the law, and of a regulatory framework which—when it comes to issues affecting the common good—is strict to the point of anal.

For instance, food regulation, financial regulation, building code regulation—all of these regulations obviously serve the common good, and protect us all from unscrupulous people seeking to get an advantage by poisoning or otherwise hurting us all. Thus the government should have a tough regulatory framework—think of it like traffic laws: Tough government regulations that are simple, transparent, and which protect us all from each other, while making our interactions smooth, convenient and graceful.

I don’t have a problem with some people making boatloads of money, while others are homeless. I don’t believe it is the State’s or society’s or the government’s responsibility to take care of you in your old age—it is your responsibility.

Gun rights—yes. Gay rights—no. States’ rights—yes. Affirmative Action—no.

There are only three issues on which I don’t toe the Hard Right line: The death penalty, the war on drugs, and health care.

I am against the death penalty—not because I think that the State and society do not have the right to execute one of its members: They do, to my way of thinking, if the citizen has committed an especially heinous act. But the death penalty is permanent: You can’t take it back if you screw up. And since no justice system made by fallible men is infallible, mistakes are inevitable. So I am of the opinion that it’s better to have 1,000 murderers sit in jail at society’s expense, than allow one innocent man be put to death. Because you can free an innocent man after twenty years in jail for a crime he didn’t commit—but you can’t bring back the dead.

I am against the War On Drugs: First of all because it doesn’t stop the consumption (and thus flow) of illegal recreational drugs; second because I believe recreational drugs (up to and including cocaine, heroin, meth and acid) ought to be legalized and taxed, like booze, and its production regulated for safety standards, again like booze; third, because the “War On Drugs” has created a huge penal class—citizens who have spent time in jail for non-violent offenses, and thus are marginalized from general society because of this stigma on their record—which hurts people who have committed non-violent infractions, and enriches people who thrive on building and staffing more and more needless prisons.

I am in favor of trashing the current American health care system, and making it either entirely private, or entirely socialist: This hybrid system the United States has not only does not work, it is extraordinarily expensive. The fact that the French of all people spend less of their gross domestic product on their socialist health care system, yet have a lower infant mortality rate and a longer median and average lifespan than people in America, is a wake-up call: If the full-Commie Frenchie system is better and cheaper than the American one, then literally any health care system is better than the one that exists in the United States.

But all in all, I’m a good Conservative. (Though certainly not a Republican—a political party dominated by Neo-Conservatives, who are not Conservative at all, but rather, Corporatists.)

I believe that America should be the land of opportunity and risk: You can fly high—but you can also crash and burn. A society that eliminates risk—that tries to somehow torque risk down with “safety nets” and “systemic protections”—is begging for a Mommy Dictatorship when all is said and done.

Now, why do I go into all this detail about my political beliefs and ideas? Because I want to make clear where I stand, before I come out and say that I am in favor of, and fully support, the Occupy Movement.

The Occupy Movement is inarticulate—but not because of it nonsensical: The protestors are against the travesty that has become the American Republic. And though its origins are on the political Left, it should not be considered a “Leftist” movement.

Rather, it is an anti-Corporatist movement.

It’s core issue is the One-Percenters: As we have currently organized the American Republic, everything seems geared to protecting and enriching the top 1% of the population—to the detriment of the 99% of the population.

The One-Percenters have made huge gains in income over the last 30 years, compared to any other tranche of the population—while the standard of living of the middle and lower classes has actually gone down.

There is less opportunity for the 99%—but more opportunities for the One-Percenters to enrich themselves at the public expense, by way of manipulating the law, the tax code, or the regulatory framework.

There is a revolving door between One-Percenters in the government and the private sector—so the former government employees make it a point to “help” the private sector One-Percenters, at the expense of the public good. Think of the Obama health care “reform”—which helped no one, save Big Pharma and Big Med.

There is zero chance that a One-Percenters who breaks the law will go to prison. He can put toxic substances in food production, inject toxins into groundwater to get at some oil, bankrupt a pension fund, steal and cheat people out of their homes—and there’ll be no consequences insofar as the law is concerned.

The things he might have done might be immoral—they might be despicable—they might even be outright wicked and evil: But they are not “illegal”—because the One-Percenters change the laws by way of their bought-and-paid-for politicians, and thus never do anything “illegal”. They only do things which are immoral, and wrong—and thus not subject to legal punishment.

Yet any member of the 99% caught smoking a little weed will go to jail for 90 days—and have a permanent black mark on his record, severely curtailing his ability to find employment, get a bank account, or otherwise participate in civil society.

How bad is this lawless among the One-Percenters? To give an example: The bankers. Not one banker has been charged with fraud, for the Robo-Signing scandal; for the fraudulent securitization scandal that led to the 2008 Global Financial Crisis; or indeed, for any of the heinous acts of financial terrorism which has essentially held us all hostage, while the banksters have raped and pillaged from us all, by way of bailouts.

How did they rape and pillage our society? By telling us through their bought-and-paid for politicians and media shills, “You better bail us out—or we’ll crash the economy by the bankruptcy of our financial institutions, and put you all out of work.” So we give them literally trillions of dollars to bail them out in 2008 and after—

—and once we bail them out, do they pay us back?

No!—don’t be naive! They don’t pay us back! Instead, they use the bailout monies to pay themselves huge bonuses. After all, as is public record, in 2009, the banks paid their executives more and bigger bonuses than ever before—even though they would have been bankrupt had it not been for the lifeline that we paid for!

Are any of these bastards cooling their heels in jail? No they are not. In other words, we pay—and the banksters get a tan in Tahiti.

And this same pattern happens in every other industry and sector of our economy—in every other area and concern of our society: The One-Percenters get all the breaks, the government “of the people, by the people and for the people” bending over backwards to give this oligarchy all these phenomenal breaks—while the rest of us in the 99% pay. And pay in spades.

This is what the Occupy Movement is against.

As far as I’m concerned, the people currently protesting are a bunch of Lefty, bongo-banging hippie-dippy metro-sexual turds—but that doesn’t make their protest wrong.

And in this case, those Lefty fools are actually right.

And we on the Right should join them.

As Al Gore accurately put it (and trust me, my skin is literally trying to crawl off my flesh as the reptilian part of my brain reacts to me praising something that Al Gore, of all people, has said), the Occupy Wall Street movement is basically a primal scream of democracy.

It is a primal democratic scream that we all feel—Lefties and Righties.

Those Lefty granola-munchers have a putatively granola-munching Lefty in the White House—but they’re out on the street anyway. Why? Because Obama might munch on granola, but he’s about as Lefty as Herbert Hoover.

Don’t get me wrong—Obama ain’t on my team. He’s about as Righty as Adlai Stevenson. No, what Obama is is corporatist—as are all the Democratic politicians. That’s why the Unions and the blacks and the other “approved” Left wing interest groups haven’t been able to co-opt the Occupy Wall Street movement:

The Occupy Movement instinctively—perhaps even inarticulately but accurately—realizes that the traditional “Left” politicians aren’t politicians of principles.

Rather, they are the best politicans money can buy: Corporate politicans bought with coporate money, via K Street lobbyists, and the revolving door between corporate interests and political power.

Just look at Michael Chertoff, the former head of Homeland Security, whom I wrote about here (a piece which by the way earned me my own HSA agent, who dilligently monitors me).

Chertoff headed the HSA under George W. Bush—so he ought to be on my team, Team Right. But he’s not—he’s Team Corporate. He’s a One-Percenter.

Chertoff served as director of Homeland Security, then left for the private sector, where he formed “The Chertoff Group”—which promptly went into business with RapiScan Systems, purveyors of airport bodyscanners.

And so what did Chertoff do? He hit every talk show and media outlet, peddling the bodyscanners.

The corporate media was happy to have him—and not once did they point out that his fear-mongering would make him wealthier. Not once did the corporate media portray Chertoff as what he was—a corporate shill. Not once did the corporate media do its job of informing the citizenry of Chertoff’s conflict of interest.

Instead, the corporate media gave Chertoff a platform, from where he could sell us all on the full-body scanners—lying and saying that they were for “our protection against the terrorists”.

Were the body scanners necessary? No—they have yet to catch a single terrorist. Do they work? No—a determined terrorist can easily defeat them, as has been demonstrated. Are they safe? No—they likely cause cancer, though no one is really sure, because safety testing of the scanners has been proscribed.

Ah, but do the body-scanners pay Chertoff a big phat fee, every time one of those $100,000 machines ($100,000 each!) is deployed in an American airport?

Guess.

Someone like Chertoff isn’t on the “Right” or on the “Left”—someone like Chertoff, or Obama, is on the side of One-Percenters: The interests of the One-Percenters are their interests—versus you and me in the 99%—because they are the One-Percent. They have more in common with each other, than with any paltry political “Left/Right” difference.

Chertoff and Obama certainly have more in common with one another, than either one of them has with us, the people whom they are supposed to serve.

Now, if I have put this issue in terms of class-warfare, it sure makes it sound Marxist—which ordinarily would make me dismiss it. After all, Marx claimed that everything that was bad in a society was the result of “class warfare”—which is bullshit, as far as I’m concerned.

But a broken clock is right twice a day. To my way of seeing things, our society has fallen into an oligarchic trap: We have confused the health and welfare of the top of the social pyramid with the health and welfare of the entire pyramid—and that of course is a mistake. The top can be just fine and dandy—while the rest of society rots, crumbles, and collapses.

This, in a nutshell, is what is happening. This is what the Occupy Movement is protesting. This is something that I support. Because the health and welfare of our society as a whole should never be confused with the health and welfare of the richest 1%.

GL

64 comments:

  1. Hi Gonzalo,

    Here is a video from YouTube showing an amazingly passionate young economics student speaking at Occupy New York. He is definitely not a Leftist but a Realist. http://youtu.be/uZmPWcLQ1Mk

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  2. When you say you're against gay rights, what do you mean? That someone does not have the freedom to live life according to their nature? What do you suggest for gay people? Prison? Walled in ghettos? The gas chamber? What? Who gives you (or anyone) the right to say who loses their rights, or humanity, on grounds of sexual morality? You sound very christian, but thank 'God' you wearn't born into a fanatical Muslim family: You'd be out stoning people in the streets.

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  3. An inarticulate movement like #OWS is a mob and subject to a manipulation that I am not. It is very likely to do things that I do not support. So even if I in principle support the concept of the 1% being held more accountable I will not support a movement that is not accountable ay all. #OWS will likely go the way of the French Revolution in my opinion and I do not support a movement that could easily use a figurative guillotine on those it perceives to be the 1% and eventually may roam the streets as an unaccountable mob.

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  4. We don't really know if France has a lower infant mortality rate then we do because they keep those stats in a different way then we do. But more importantly the reason our infant mortality rate is not as good as it could be has nothing to do with our health care system but ironically (considering you favor legalization of drugs) it is because of mothers being on drugs. If we as a nation used less of these illegal and harmful drugs our infant mortality rate would improve.
    Another point is that; yes our health care costs more then France's but our health care is better. If you get seriously ill in France in August then you are out of luck because the entire country is on vacation and the hospitals are seriously understaffed. If you need health care the rst of the year in France the decision to give it to you is based on cost not on need. You may well die if there is not enough money which there never is. Socialized health care always leads to "death panels" that decide who gets care and how much.

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  5. Excellent piece, Gonzalo. Chertoff falls in the same category as that other asshole: Dick Cheney.

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  6. You forgot the ending...
    "And that is why I am endorsing Ron Paul for President in 2012."

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  7. So GL supports the OWS movement. Against the so-called 1%.

    But I think GL got it confused.

    It's really the 0.000001875%.

    See, 0.000001875% = 600/320 million. 600 is the population of key politicians in the USA, while 320 million is the population.

    While yes, the 1% of corporatist bastards in the private sector did screw the country with no remorse, it is the 0.000001875% who hold the final power to fix it. But they don't. They allowed themselves to be corrupted by the corporatists, they took the money and they passed the laws to protect the 1%. They are the one who yanked out regulations, who spent like insane monarchs, who approved and conduct imperial wars with borrowed money, who issued trillions of bonds with no intention of repayment, who refused to solve severe national problems, and who conduct political war of national suicide.

    And they are also the ones voted into office by the 99%. Time after time, decade after decade.

    So 99%+1% = 100% all deserves the consequence.

    This is how empires fell. They knew very well the empire is finish, but could not reverse it because they are the one who caused it. It is better to die together than by your own hands. Just ask various Arab leaders of late.

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  8. great post, GL. i agree with this vehemently, although there are parts of your beliefs that i don't agree with (e.g. although male homosexuality kind of grosses me out on a personal level, i can't find any place in me that doesn't believe that gay couples should have any and all of the same legal rights that straight couples have, although i am not sure why any couples should have any kind of "legal" standing...). still, i am more conservative than liberal -- especially with regard to fiscal issues and i also support OWS.

    i wish that OWS had some kind of straight-forward platform that could be more leveragable, but in a weird way, its amorphousness also seems like a kind of strength, making it less susceptible to being co-opted by someone with an agenda that is tangential at best.

    i think that you have identified the primary "DNA" of the OWS movement -- essentially the protest against a fixed, crony-advantaged system -- and i hope that message keeps coming through loud and clear. i think that everyone who is not a parasite, regardless of where they fall on the spectrum of political values, should support a level playing field for all.

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  9. Sooo. You can bend the Hard Right ideology enough to see that the French model of health care provides more care for less cost, and that the war on drugs is counter-productive and the death penalty can be misused, but you think a zygote is more important than a 14 year old victim of incest, or a women who has been brutally raped. And people whose sexual orientation offends you should have their rights limited - to what? Can they hold whatever job a straight person can have? Have sex with any consenting adult legally? Get married? What? And why does the ideology of the right say that a person born gay has fewer rights? If a person cannot choose his sexual orientation (or his gender, or his race or his ethnicity) why is it 'moral' to reduce the liberty of a person based on a PARTICULAR POINT OF VIEW!!?

    Right or Left, ideology makes people stupid and narrow. Given your inflexible and self centered reasoning, why in the world should I care what your opinion is on OWS?

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  10. I enjoy posting a conservative espousing ideas that make sense. I've enjoyed learning there is a notion of conservative that is worth considering. The neo-conservatives have truly honed in on your territory. Mostly I like throwing you at potential readers wondering where the hell I'm coming from for posting such. But if you make sense you make sense. Can't argue with it even I don't share some of your conservative policy positions.

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  11. Hi Gonzalo, I'm with you at 99% (ahahahah). I don't agree ONLY with your arguments about drugs, and about death penalty.
    I think you are christian, like me, so i give you this aphorism about the mess in which we all are at present:

    Capitalism without failure is like Christianity without Hell

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  12. I like most of what you say, Gonzalo. On a few issues I don't like what you say.
    The main issue where I don't understand your thinking is on taxation. The "relaxed" taxation on the rich have allowed them to amass power and wealth to such extremes that they can buy the media and government to do their bidding. And this is putting the fairness of it all aside, which is another argument for more taxation of the rich.

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  13. No matter what system we have now or in the future as a result of continuous revolution, we will always be ruled and manipulated by those of us who are more clever and ambitious. Those few may actually have good intentions at first but will inexorably arrive at that moment of enlightenment where they will act in their own self interest. Ergo, nothing ever truly changes for the betterment of all for long. All ideologies have become corrupted due to the lust and avarice inherent to our human species. We are no better than lowly microbes who devour each other except for the fact that we do so in a much more entertaining way. GLB

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  14. Good start. Seems like the Tea Party is against big (and growing) government, and the OWS is against the greedy corporatist. Once both sides understand the synergy between the government and the corporatists, then the fit will really hit the shan.

    Overall, this is the start of the Saecular Winter. Gonna be a COLD one at that.

    C deK

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  15. Anonymous @ 10:06

    You must be one of those that has never experienced healthcare anywhere outside of the USA.

    The fact of the matter is that the USA is currently ranked at #37 by the World Health Organization:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WHO's_ranking_of_healthcare_systems

    But they are number ONE for expenditure!!

    Even poor Greece at #14 is way ahead of the USA, and we all know what happening in Greece lately.

    Even Morocco at #29 are 8 places ahead of the USA, I mean, fucking Morocco of all places, they have better healthcare than the USA, I know it’s hard to believe, but it’s a fact.

    Here is a great video/song that aptly describes America's healthcare predicament:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yVgOl3cETb4

    Thanks for the writing GL, nice to see you get back to what you are good at.

    However, I do disagree with you on the gay issue, and as someone else posted "It grosses me out" which it does for me, but they are people after all, and unless they try and get you to bend to their ways, I see no harm in giving equal rights etc.

    I too support OWS.

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  16. I love how people say that gays are acting as their "nature" tells them to.
    What if my "nature" was that I was attracted to married women? Should I act on that just because it's my "nature"? The answer is no! Just because you have a feeling doesn't give you the right to act on it.

    Either way, you gotta realize that republican and democrats only respond to money because that is human "nature".

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  17. Hello,

    Although I'm sure I'd never have been invited, I imagine there are worse ways to spend an evening than by attending an all night drinking party with a bunch of highly intelligent, extremely cultured and articulate gay guys discussing philosophy. Especially if one of them is Socrates and another Alcibiades, his erstwhile lover. Sure beats sitting in a fetid tent in the middle of a hot desert with some patriarch, surrounded by his many flocks and many wives, being instructed in the finer points of the book of Leviticus. But hey, that's just me. Looks like GL would have chosen the tent. Oh well.

    OWS happened, is happening, because of the fraud and the bailouts that happened on Wall Street, the refusal to prosecute by the Obama administration, the serious and politically disruptive wealth inequality in America etc. The Tea Party happened, at least in its earlier incarnation, in part, for some of the same reasons, more or less. Now the Ron Paul movement is happening. Can anyone say "the Mitt Romney movement?" I didn't think so.

    For me, OWS is, and I reluctantly use this word, ominous. That's because its effect is to undermine in the eyes of the population the very legitimacy of the political and economic system that appears to have made these abuses possible in the first place. That's its point and that's why OWS doesn't need to have an "agenda". The messange is the agenda and that's why OWS is potentially so disruptive. The message, which in effect delegitimizes the system, is convincing to many because the abuses OWS points to are certainly real and serious.

    People can argue that what has happened is only a corruption of an otherwise good system - this may be true - but that won't matter once faith in the "system" itself has disappeared and TPTB generally are regarded with a dull hatred and open contempt.

    Most of the individual participants of OWS, I imagine - and just like the Tea Party - are reformers, not revolutionaries. The airline pilots, and now, union members who were marching are certainly reformers, including many students, and middle class middle age people who were there.

    But I suspect the "effect" of the entire spectacle of this movement which illuminates the awsome spectrum of political, legal, and economic abuses and resultant social pain, can-will effectively call into question the legitimacy of the system itself. Violent police repression only reinforces this dynamic.

    This is not a criticism of OWS, but an observation about the state of the society that gave rise to it, to the Tea Party, and to the radical reform movement of Ron Paul. America, I suspect, needs a radical reformer, it's that sick. And it may not matter much if radical principled reform comes from the progressive left or the libertarian right. Or some sort of unanticiapted combination of the two. These are political choices, not existential questions. The existential question, is serious reform, or no reform. At least this is the thought I've come to entertain.

    Finally, I wonder what those undoubtedly quite attractive - intellectually of course - gay guys at Plato's Symposium would have thought about all this. They were a daring group in many things, most especially things political, military, and intellectual. I particularly wonder if the gifted but unprincipled character Alcibiades would have seen an opportunity for himself anywhere in the present mess and what that opportunity might be.

    Regards,

    Unna

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  18. @ anonymous at 10:06
    Having lived in both USA and FRance , I can assure you I prefer the French healthcare system to theUS one ANY DAY even in August!

    Btw, we have less obsess people in Europe, lower junk food consumption, we don't feed our cattle GH, and we have banned the sale of GMOs in our supermarkets. Maybe that's why Europeans are smarter, slimmer and better looking than Americans!

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  19. You should spell "compulsory" properly, it sounds almost Freudian slip-like to say "cumpulsory".

    I like you very much Gonzalo and your writing is awesome, but you're quite a big government guy for someone I assumed sided with the Austrian school.

    All regulation in food, drugs, everything will always be co-opted by the powerful interests. The only way to prevent this is to have no regulation and let the markets dictate what they want.

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  20. Corrected my misspelling of compulsory. Sorry about that.

    GL

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  21. Seems to me that the OWS are targeting the wrong
    group of people/taxpayers. It's not that the wealthiest 1% or even 5% are not taxed enough, they certainly are because they're already paying the largest part of taxes collected by the govt. while 48% pay absolutely nothing. What's wrong with this picture???
    The protests should be congregated and centered in Washington DC around Congress and K Street. Wasteful spending, preferred treatment for lobbyists that pay enough money to key politicians and an unaccountable government that has allowed Crony Capitalism to destroy our system is to blame. Couple all of that with a populace that has spent all of its time since WWII chasing the American Dream, working hard, accumulating a modicum of wealth and then living beyond their means all the while not holding their elected "career" officials accountable for derailing the American Dream and here we are.
    Capitalism is not to blame! It's what made this country great. But Crony Capitalism is destroying it!

    Just John

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  22. The U.S. health care system is rated #37 by the UN but the measure they use is how many people get it for free. If you doubt that look it up. They don't measure effectiveness. When rich people (who can afford the best) living in Europe, Canada and the Middle East get seriously ill where do they go for health care? To the country rated #37 by the UN. DUH!

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  23. Actually a lot of Middle Easterners go to private Swiss clinics.. not US!

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  24. Make up your mind, pendejo. don't try to seat on two chairs at the same time.

    Typical hypocrite-chilean

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  25. Hello again,

    I reread GL's post this morning and aside from poking a little fun at him over the gay rights thing, I think his post is exactly the genuine kind of soul searching and thinking we all need to do.

    It reaffirmes his core beliefs, he's rethinking "socialized medicine" as perhaps the cheapest way to go, (wow) he's looking for allies in places he previously would never have visited - and why not?

    He lays it all out, with all the contradictions, and makes himself open to the critics, myself included, and that takes some real guts, and honesty, to do.

    I'm still staying away from that Leviticus crazed patriarch and his desert sweat lodge, but GL's post is good stuff. (I hate being positive in the morning.)

    Regards,

    Unna

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  26. GL ... not that long ago you were on a tirade because you saw no signs of street demonstrations in the USA. Thanks to OWS - they have now materialized.

    Occupy is doing a good job of venting peoples' frustrations with the system. As such, OWS performs the same function as the spout on a tea kettle - it blasts steam and makes a good noise. Unfortunately, however, many city authorities have now pushed the OWS out of the city centers and the movement is diffusing.

    Occupy has one central problem - it's main objective is to OCCUPY. Great. But what exactly do you do after that?? There is no coherent message about change that can be implemented. Occupy is not demanding something real that can be transformed. I'm sure the protesters would disagree - but practically speaking that's what it boild down to. As such, OWS provides some emotional relief but no real change in the system. In fact, ironically Occupy may actually be helping the powers-that-be by providing some outward appearance of "protest" without accomplishing anything tangible.

    PeteCA

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  27. Outstanding article. These thoughts are practically my own.

    What is primarily being used against us - whether you happen to support OWS or Tea Party - is the very effective tactic of the Hegelian Dialectic.

    In brief, and quoting from Wikipedia: "...usually presented in a threefold manner, ... as comprising three dialectical stages of development: a thesis, giving rise to its reaction, an antithesis, which contradicts or negates the thesis, and the tension between the two being resolved by means of a synthesis."

    If you start with the desired synthesis, then setup your agents to propose thesis and antithesis, you can control the masses quite easily. You will have succeeded by having the people actually work against their own best interests.

    This has been demonstrated most recently with the co-option of the "Tea Party" by the Republicans and Neo-Cons. An attempt at co-option is in process at this time regarding the OWS people. Interestingly enough, the original 2008 "Tea Party" and the current OWS sprung from the same outrage: government/big-business corruption. The "Tea Party" now finds itself bracketed by its own Media champions (AM radio talk shows and Fox News) into an opposition position in regard to OWS - yet the impetus of each was identical. "Tea Party" supporters now find they cannot support OWS without the ridicule of their "leaders" on radio and television (all big corporation-owned). It's amazing to see it happen - though tragic. It was all done using Hegelian Dialectic principles.

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  28. Like CL, I too made a typo error in my previous post. The population of the US is of course 230 million, not 320 million.

    The OWS movement is nothing more then letting some steam out and the financiers know it. They are not frighten but actually enjoying watching the bankrupt mass which they can step on like ants. They smiled because they know they have used up all the bailout money and nothing is left for the jobless. They know the entire political class is still in their pockets.

    Nothing will happen until OWS rename their movement to OWS. OWS? Yes. See, the O now means overthrow.

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  29. Oh wow, I did not expect this.

    So, you're a fascist.

    Pro regulation, government knows best, right?
    Homophobic, - you're the only one that should have rights.
    And despotic to the boot, - mandatory military service?

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  30. Hey people, I'm as open to 'alternative lifestyles' as can be. It makes sense to me for a society to encourage heterosexual behavior as without it, who the heck is going to pick up the pieces!! The Gay thing, IMHO is not to disadvantage the homosexual, but not to encourage it either. So a bunch of guys, or gals have a great time having sex, OK, but I shouldn't have to subsidize their behavior by tax breaks etc. On the other hand, it might be in the public (as yet unborn) interest to encourage hetero sexual behavior. Don't make the little stuff BIG by dwelling on it!!
    L

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  31. True, people do go to those Swiss clinics and people go to those Mexican clinics. But get serious, they go their because they have been sold a bill of goods by quacks. Intelligent people go to the big wel known hospitals where successful doctors are found. Anyone with a serious illness going to a quack clinic dies from lack of care just about as quick as they would in a socialized health care system.

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  32. Chico,

    I like to consider myself real macho. I love women and have felt at ease with them on 3 continents. By the time I went into Marine Corps Officer bootcamp, I had been in countless real fights. I began to learn how to fight and the taste of my blood as a toodler. Boot camp was a cake walk, physically and psychologically in spite of my Scot Irish DI's greatest efforts to break me. He ended up respecting me after he saw what I could do in hand to hand combat and pugle stick fighting.

    Having established by purebred Visigoth Celtic Iberian creditials, I feel more comfortable discussing the gay issue.

    I don't believe gays should openly serve in the military (especially in the Marines).
    I am pissed beyond measure everytime they attack the Catholic Church and refuse to serve priest at restaurants.
    I find it unacceptable that they try to brainwash our children with their BS propaganda.

    However, I do believe that some men (2%) are born gay and therefore should be left alone in peace. They should have the same rights and benefits both of us share. Gay boys should not be beat up or abuse pyscholically. I think you went too far on this issue.

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  33. Since you appeared to lay down your principles, the things you believe in, and not simply describe the reality (as then your statement that, for instance, you are against The War On Drugs, would be a hallucination), then you obviously believe in the state subsidizing married couples.

    Cause if you didn't, then why would you think that married gays would be subsidized?

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  34. I have to agree with both Anonymi?? 7:28 and 10:10 even thought they actually disagree. The real question is: Why in an overpopulated world do governments need to subsidize marriage of any kind?
    Sex is not subsidized as some indicate because, if it was, governments would go broke sending out cheques to hormonal teens. :-) Since sex is adding to the problem then should it not be taxed?
    I agree with most of GL's positions but with two changes. One: since gays should have their rights limited we should obviously limit the rights of those with any handicaps or a different coloured skin than GL (ie. not lightly tanned). Seems reasonable but there are gonna be some pissed off whities too now.
    Two: GL, to be consistent, should want all religions to stop being subsidized. Except his.

    Just saying!

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  35. Hi GL,

    I came across an article by Steven Greenhut today that, after reading your piece, prompted quite a thought.

    While it wasn't on the Occupy movement like yours, (more geared towards the abusive reactions by police), Greenhut said:

    "I disagree with most of what the Occupy protesters are saying, quite obviously, but when I see lines of riot-gear-clad officials standing in front of these unbathed wretches, my heart goes out to the wretches. They need a lesson in economics and politics. The policies they advocate – to the degree that many of them have any well-defined grievances – range from the silly to the disastrous. They are inconsistent, foolish and hypocritical. Many of them are lazy freeloaders."


    I was wondering about the similarites & differences between the Occupy & Tea Party movements, and was struck with something.

    Both movements seem to be quite compatible at their cores - protests against corruption, bribery, debt, government-corporate cronyism - oligarchy.

    The differences that have been talked about are that the Tea Party is/was "respectable", while the Occupy Movement is a bunch of leftist bums.

    Those "unbathed wretches" of the Occupy Movement, as Greenhut puts it, "need a lesson in economics and politics."

    They're inarticulate, as you put it. "Demands" from the movement are all over the place, and are largely leftist pap that won't truly fix the things that the movement is against at it's core.

    And what I realized, is that the Tea Party was heavily made up of 35 year olds and up, while the Occupy Movement seems to be primarily made up of 35 year olds and DOWN.

    That made me wonder, is the incoherence & ignorant "demands & solutions" from the Occupy Movement due to the fact that younger people are dumber? Proof that our compulsory schooling system is working at it's designed & intended purpose better than ever? Is the Occupy Movement largely incapable of suggesting real solutions, as capable of focus, as capable of self-discipline & self-control, because it's made up more heavily with younger, dumber people, as books like "Dumbing Us Down" described them being formed as?

    Could that be the difference, & if so, what can be done to help the Occupy Movement be taken more seriously by the people on "the Right" who actually agree with the core issue?

    Chris

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  36. Chris,
    You are on the right track, but your question does not go far enough.

    Those on "The Right" who think they are educated on issues of economics and politics are uneducated, too - just like the Occupy Wall Street crowd. They are just operating under a different set of deceptions.

    I have been inside the Tea Party movement. I have participated in both online and in-real-life patriot groups that claim to support restoration of civil liberties and limited government. After participating as an active member of these groups it became clear to me they exist for purposes other than their stated missions.

    They act in ways that suppress liberty and grow government. They perpetuate the myths about our money system and our economy. They act in ways to suppress and marginalize the voices of truth.

    These groups even serve as ground zero to disseminate new deceptive ideas about our money system and our political system. I experienced this first hand in both groups.

    Neither the Tea Party movement nor Occupy Wall Street is educated about the true nature of our money system, our economic system, or our political system. Those who are in positions of influence within both groups perpetuate lies and myths about these systems, and they are working to replace the revealed lies with new lies.

    There is a famine in the land. A famine of The Truth.

    There are many Americans who are drawn to both the Occupy and Tea Party movements who are hungry for The Truth. They are being fed lies.

    The real question is not how can two deluded and co-opted groups come together. If you do this you have the blind leading the blind.

    The real question is - How do those who are within both the Occupy Wall Street and Tea Party movements, who are hungry for The Truth, become educated in The Truth?

    K Smith

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  37. So Gonzola is deleting the comments of those he disagrees with or challenge his gaping peasant religious views.

    As well he has yet to make one prescient or accurate call on the markets.

    Gonzalo is a wannabe economist not understanding that they are the lowest form of scum on the earth.

    As Taleb wrote - “If you hear a "prominent" economist using the word 'equilibrium,' or 'normal distribution,' do not argue with him; just ignore him, or try to put a rat down his shirt.”

    Gonzalo isn't prominent but his shirt is open enough to dump a bucket of rats into as is his the gaps in his logic.

    A hypocrite on free speech and the leader of an inconsequential group think. No doubt the intellectual coward will tear this down in 24 hours as well.

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  38. Hi Gonzalo,
     
    You are fantastic at constructing an argument - one of the best I think. I've lost count of the number of times you've made me rethink a previously entrenched view.
     
    So I'd really appreciate it if you could do one of your pieces on why you say NO to gay rights. All the 'pro-no' arguments in the comments above seem pretty flimsy, so it would be really interesting and enlightening to hear something with some substance and structure to it.
     
    Thanks,
    RK

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  39. I'm not that concerned about the banksters. They're going to be bankrupted in this next crash. The lesson from MF Global, as well as from the old MBS frauds, is that in the absence of regulation, banksters can no longer trust each other. Without that trust the financial system seizes up. We're pretty much there now. But this time no government has any money for bailouts.

    I'd still be happy to see bloated corp-political corpses hanging from lamp-posts. But it looks like the free market is going to crawl out from under the rubble the oligarchs buried it under, and it'll have its own revenge.

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  40. K Smith,

    I like what you wrote very much. I also agree that what you have stated is exactly the case, which is why I despise both TTP and OWS as idiots, and those commentators who think that those two groups "represent" any kind of "movement", I put on the list of blind.

    However, there is still one more problem remains. You say, that these groups need to be educated as to the truth. Hell, yes, I agree.

    Who's version of the truth, tough? Yours, mine, GLs?

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  41. Dear Gonzalo,
    I know it might be hard and long, but I think is better to read Marx before talking about him..

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  42. Definitions, definitions, ...
    Please, don't include all Corporations in the "1%".
    The real criminals are the Mercantilists and Bankers.
    Mercantilists are those in the private sector that use the power of the Government to benefit themselves.
    Thus I would call Chertoff a Mercantilist but not Steve Jobs.
    Warren Buffet has become a Mercantilist in his old age but Bill Gates has not.
    The consumer has the power to make or destroy a private corporation.
    You don't like Microsoft Windows, don't buy it.
    But you don't have the choice not to buy Chertoff's body scanners.
    He uses the power of the Government to make you buy them.
    As far as the bankers.
    They, basically, manage a fraud: fiat money and fractional reserve banking.
    They should all be in jail.
    The OWS demonstrators know that something is wrong and that it has to do with Wall Street.
    They just can not articulate what the root cause is.

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  43. Just a note that Hungarian bonds were lowered to junk status today. Just one more step in the "race to the bottom" as the Eurozone slowly crumples up like an empty paper bag.

    Meanwhile, the country of Syria is falling apart politically. But it's hard to see Assad going "peacefully into that good night". Are we close to another MidEast war? I wouldn't be surprised.

    PeteCA

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  44. The strength and power of the 1%ers lays with their control of the US media --- the TV, radio, and print media that has power over what the 99% hears and sees.

    The 99% are not given a chance to get an accurate reading of this sad situation. By what objective measure is OWS put in a dark light -- as opposed what was an incredible massive hurt put on America by the NY bankers. How many times is OWS trashed and how many times are the NY banks even spoken about by the media? There is no accurate correlation between the what little wrong the OWS folks have done and what the oligarch bankers have done.

    No one can fight the media in America. Oh' - and it is controlled by a tribe - privately, corporately, and publicly.

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  45. Mr. Lira, I respect your positions but do have a disagreement and a few points where I suspect that we would agree but that are not 100% clear in your statements.
    1.) I do believe that we ought to have a social safety net, particularly to protect the old.
    2.) I also oppose abortion under all circumstances, however I (and I assume you) would not make abortion prior to the 2nd trimester absolutely illegal.
    3.) When you state that you oppose gay rights I assume that you oppose granting rights specifically to gays or any other 'group'? Put another way what I support is truly equal rights for every law abiding citizen and again I assume you mean to say the same?
    Ron Paul 012!

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  46. GL-
    While some of your specific points (as always) are "right on", your bottom line here is off the mark. The OWS folks should be aiming their fire at politicians of both major parties who have allowed themselves to "hook up" with Wall Street. Obama is using OWS as a smokescreen to divert attention from his administrations glaring failures.

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  47. The only little problem with your thesis is that most of the OWS'ers are for more government handouts, i.e. free college education, provide jobs for people, forgive student loans, etc., etc., etc.. So, good luck with that Lira.

    www.bloomfieldstreet.blogspot.com

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  48. Amazing to read the various opinions. good to see what kind of man/person Gonzalo is with his "declarations." Life in so many words, more or less. this being his blog, i can take it or leave it.

    i have agreed with many of his thoughts about the economic system. i don't agree with his vision of society or humanness. Maybe a few more years living might induce more forgiveness and acceptance of things he doesn't allow in his worldview.

    the hubris of such worldviews is common, as the comments show. in the dog eat dog world which i gather Mr. Lira lives, this is his view.

    i am glad i don't live in his world, what i consider to be unrealistic. imposing his values on the society of others is where i find Mr. Lira has no currency whatsoever. I do think it is funny and really sad to accept such pontifications on gays, abortion and other issues. things i would expect only those who are pro Big Government want.

    the economic forecasting from Mr. Lira is usually quite close to correct, most of the times. I've enjoyed reading this blog. that's why it is so odd to see such a Big Brother point of view come from Mr. Lira. such certainty and conviction all way round.

    and of course, all the people who agree with Mr. Lira's speciousness are worth reading.
    an education indeed.

    i am only sure of the Rich never paying taxes/their share thereof. and the love of power as shown by those in power. Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

    that death awaits us all and the Rich don't pay taxes.aka Leona Helmsley most recent proponent
    two adages that seem to be a certainty in this world full of uncertainty.

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  49. There's no doubt about it, Gonzalo has one of the smallest minds in the business.

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  50. Readers, it is time to take back the Republican party from the Corporatists.

    Sign up for campaign emails from www.ronpaul2012.com

    Register Republican and take a few friends to the primary voting booth or caucus meeting.
    Ron Paul can win every caucus state, but we must be registered Republican soon to participate in the caucus process.

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  51. http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/how-i-stopped-worrying-and-learned-to-love-the-ows-protests-20111110

    http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/blogs/taibblog/uc-davis-pepper-spray-incident-reveals-weakness-up-top-20111122

    IMO, for all of Occupy's merits/demerits, it is just one of the early stops on the train back to Sanitas. Hold on; it's gonna be one helluva ride. Godspeed.

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  52. For all those giving GL grief about his normal, healthy, manly stance on sodomy... No one has a right to do what is wrong. Inserting one's penis into another man's anus is contrary to the natural law and is, therefore, intrinsically wrong. 'Mutual consent' has nothing to do with it. FWIW, detestation of sodomy is not the same thing as hatred or fear of sodomites.

    As for the pipe-dream of absolutely free markets, such an idea ignores the patently obvious: the one with the biggest stick and the smallest conscience will eventually come to dominate. Deny original sin all you want; its effects are all around and within every single one of us.

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  53. One dollar from 6,840,507,000 people (current world population) is a lot more than $1,000,000 from each of the wealthiest entities world wide. Don’t believe me, then consider retailers like Kmart and Wallmart who figured this out years ago. They make a lot more than Cartier. Additionally, there was a guy who did a documentary on the total wealth which trades hands between the world’s poor (can’t remember the title.) This ends up representing far more wealth than all the riches of all the kingdoms of the world. So who should we tax to get the most money? The numbers still point to just a little bit from each and every person on the planet. Focusing on a few “rich” people is an unsophisticated illusion. If everyone would just give a little, we would make progress.

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  54. You're full of it, you don't even live in the US and obviously have no clue. OWS is not a grassroots movement, it is a well funded communist movement making use of the Ivy League educated useful idiots. You, Gonzalo, have no clue.

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  55. Bernie Madoff - Prison
    Ken Lay - Prison
    Dennis Kozlowski - Prison
    Raj Rajawhatever - Prison

    It isn't exactly zero percent chance that the 1%ers skate on any infraction.

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  56. How to give an emetic to the US legal system to rid it of pro-corporatist legislation is a process that can be described in a paragraph of pseudocode using only two loops.

    For each US taxing entity
    grab the entity's laws, rules, and regulations
    For each law, rule, and regulation
    determine whether it is corporatist in effect
    if it is, document that and repeal it
    end loop
    end loop

    It really is that simple.

    Once you've got the work packets set up, by all means invite both sides in to see which one is really the anti-corporatist face of america. I strongly suspect that any attempt to enlist the OWS in an effort to do this will be futile and any effort to do this in the tea party set will be quite fruitful.

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  57. Gonazalo, I agree with most of your opinions, especially on abortion, sodomy and (much) smaller role of the state in our lives. The biggest exception is the motivation agains death penalty. I am a Catholic and I believe life is a sacred gift from God. Don't kill - and love your brother as you love yourself - that is probably enough to explain my motivation. Thank you for this post. What you said in it is really important. I would like to express my support.

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  58. A very interesting read, and we agree on many topic points. I live in San Francisco, and believe me, the OWS people here are hard Left. They are seemingly protesting against heavy handed government, but they definitely want their own brand of it to take its place. There is no freedom of expression in the camp, any libertarian voices are quickly shouted down, sometimes even blows are exchanged. I pass the camp every day, and I tell you I have been seeing these same miscreants for years, the OWS movement is just the latest flavor of the week.

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  59. Gonzalo Lira, I have followed you for a long time as well as some of your friends, eg Turd, Keiser etc. i have also found you very interesting and somewhat enlightened.

    It saddens me to hear some of your very dated and illogical views that I can only assume stems from religious beliefs, ie anti abortion even for rape victims and no rights for gays.

    I have always found it difficult to really trust the views of a deeply fundamentally religious person as religion is based on faith with no scientific proof. If a person is capable of faith in one part of his life, how can you block it out in another?

    religion is the root of most of our problems and it is pretty clear to me having read a lot on the subject that religion is man made for power grabbing purposes. I do not intend to have a long debate on this, I just felt compelled to let you know my views. i suppose I am disappointed that someone of your intelligence and logical capacity that constantly question illogical behaviour in the financial markets would be deeply religious.

    If you applied your normal critical thinking I do not believe you would hold any religious beliefs in the face of the over whelming evidence against. I also think you would then think that if a 12 year old girl have been raped by her father, she should be allowed an abortion.

    All the best to you from someone that no longer is able to take you as seriously as I used to.

    /Sueco

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  60. The house of cards will fall when the last debtor can no longer pay . . . and then we will see Mad Max in the Western World.

    http://djia.tv/press-tv/whoops-why-everyone-owes-everyone-no-one-can-pay-by-john-lanchester-epilogue-12-05-2011/

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  61. I cannot speak for GL, but when he wrote about his position on gay rights, I think his point was that he does not believe in rights that are unique or exclusive to gays (or any differentiating label/group, for that matter).
    We simply have rights - universal human (NOT corporate) rights - for everyone.
    At least, that's my read into it for whatever it's worth.

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  62. First the Occupy movement is based on lies. The biggest of which is the 99% lie. The attached article shows that not only is income inequality not a problem in the US, but the people the occupy movement hates the most are the top 0.004% of our great country!

    http://www.realclearmarkets.com/articles/2011/12/13/what_is_rich_and_poor_in_america__99418.html

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  63. I don't expect this to even get read, commenting this late.

    I grew up a union child, and of course, unions almost always vote Dem. I'm sure that had some spin on my views. '00 - '08 I voted Dem. Hell, I even volunteered for Obama in the final days leading up to the '08 election.

    I have to totally agree with you on the Occupy movement. I'm not sure even most of them realize what they are against yet, but they'll get there. All of the reading (including much of what you've had to say over the past year) I've done since the '08 collapse has only further opened my eyes to how inflation is steadily eroding the common mans wealth.

    The only ray of light I have seen as of late is Ron Paul.

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  64. Re. Anonymous at Dec. 29, 2011, 8:17pm:

    Nothing wrong with commenting late in the game.

    Don't depend on Ron Paul—get involved.

    I get get involved by doing what I do best—writing. Get involved in whatever way can help the cause of overthrowing the oligarchy, ending the military-industrial complex, and recreating equality of opportunity for individuals.

    If the only thing you can think of is going to an Occupy protest—go!

    Nothing is worse than regret. Nothing is worse than saying, “If only I had protested when I had the chance . . .”

    GL

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Whether you agree with me or not, thank you for your comment.

If you liked what I wrote—or if it at least made you think—don’t be shy about making a payment. The PayPal button is there for your convenience.

If you have a question or a private comment, do feel free to e-mail me at my address expat229@gmail.com.

GL