Tag Archives: economy

What Law Did the AIG Executives Break?

When did it become ok for the government to steal money lawfully given to people?   If they can go in and break lawful contracts because they believe the reciever to be “undeserving” they can do anything they want and the law and your rights will mean nothing.  Most of the executives recieving these “outrageous bonuses” are working on a salary of $1 a year.  These bonuses represent almost their entire yearly income. 

The problem with these policies is that eventually the government is going to  run out of other peoples’ money.  You can only tax the rich out of prosperity for so long before they decide that they are better off going to work at McDonalds.

The John Galt’s of the world are already starting to walk away.   see: https://wearemadashell.wordpress.com/2009/03/25/dear-aig-i-quit/ 

It won’t be long now before everything starts to implode.

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The New York Times Writing a Fair Article about a Conservative???? The End is Certainly Near. Fox News’s Mad, Apocalyptic, Tearful Rising Star

Glenn Beck, after two months, has 2.3 million viewers

Glenn Beck, after two months, has 2.3 million viewers

You are not alone,” Glenn Beck likes to say. For the disaffected and aggrieved Americans of the Obama era, he could not have picked a better rallying cry.

Mr. Beck, an early-evening host on the Fox News Channel, is suddenly one of the most powerful media voices for the nation’s conservative populist anger. Barely two months into his job at Fox, his program is a phenomenon: it typically draws about 2.3 million viewers, more than any other cable news host except Bill O’Reilly or Sean Hannity, despite being on at 5 p.m., a slow shift for cable news.

With a mix of moral lessons, outrage and an apocalyptic view of the future, Mr. Beck, a longtime radio host who jumped to Fox from CNN’s Headline News channel this year, is capturing the feelings of an alienated class of Americans.

In an interview, Mr. Beck, who recently rewatched the 1976 film “Network,” said he identified with the character of Howard Beale, the unhinged TV news anchorman who declares on the air that he is “mad as hell.”

“I think that’s the way people feel,” Mr. Beck said. “That’s the way I feel.” In part because of Mr. Beck, Fox News — long identified as the favored channel for conservatives and Republican leaders — is enjoying a resurgence just two months into Mr. Obama’s term. While always top-rated among cable news channels, Fox’s ratings slipped during the long Democratic primary season last year. Now it is back on firm footing as the presumptive network of the opposition, with more than 1.2 million viewers watching at any given time, about twice as many as CNN or MSNBC.

While Mr. O’Reilly, the 8 p.m. host, paints himself as the outsider and Mr. Hannity, at 9, is more consistently ideological, Mr. Beck presents himself as a revivalist in a troubled land.

He preaches against politicians, hosts regular segments titled “Constitution Under Attack” and “Economic Apocalypse,” and occasionally breaks into tears.

Michael Smerconish, a fellow syndicated talk show host, said that Mr. Beck “has a gift for touching the passion nerve.”

Tapping into fear about the future, Mr. Beck also lingers over doomsday situations; in a series called “The War Room” last month he talked to experts about the possibility of global financial panic and widespread outbreaks of violence. He challenged viewers to “think the unthinkable” so that they would be prepared in case of emergency.

“The truth is — that you are the defender of liberty,” he said. “It’s not the government. It’s not an army or anybody else. It’s you. This is your country.”

And always, Mr. Beck’s emotions are never far from the surface. “That’s good dramatic television,” said Phil Griffin, the president of a Fox rival, MSNBC. “That’s who Glenn Beck is.”

Mr. Beck says he believes every word he says on his TV show, and the radio show that he still hosts from 9 a.m. to noon each weekday.

He says that America is “on the road to socialism” and that “God and religion are under attack in the U.S.” He recently wondered aloud whether FEMA was setting up concentration camps, calling it a rumor that he was unable to debunk.

At the same time, though, he says he is an entertainer. “I’m a rodeo clown,” he said in an interview, adding with a coy smile, “It takes great skill.”

And like a rodeo clown, Mr. Beck incites critics to attack by dancing in front of them.

“There are absolutely historical precedents for what is happening with Beck,” said Tom Rosenstiel, the director of the Project for Excellence in Journalism. “There was a lot of radio evangelism during the Depression. People were frustrated and frightened. There are a lot of scary parallels now.”

The conservative writer David Frum said Mr. Beck’s success “is a product of the collapse of conservatism as an organized political force, and the rise of conservatism as an alienated cultural sensibility.”

“It’s a show for people who feel they belong to an embattled minority that is disenfranchised and cut off,” he said.

Joel Cheatwood, a senior vice president for development at Fox News, said he thought Mr. Beck’s audience was a “somewhat disenfranchised” one. And, he added, “it’s a huge audience.”

Mr. Beck has used phrases like “we surround them,” invoked while speaking vaguely about people who do not share his discomfort with the “direction America is being taken in.”

His comments have prompted several bloggers to speculate recently that the TV host may have been promoting an armed revolt.

Jeffrey Jones, a professor of media and politics at Old Dominion University and author of the book “Entertaining Politics,” said that Mr. Beck engages in “inciting rhetoric. People hear their values are under attack and they get worried. It becomes an opportunity for them to stand up and do something.”

Sitting in his corner office overlooking Avenue of the Americas in Manhattan, Mr. Beck rejected such charges but acknowledged that some people see sinister meanings in his commentaries. He said the people “who are spreading the garbage that I’m stirring up a revolution haven’t watched the show.”

To answer his critics, Mr. Beck delivered a 17-minute commentary — remarkably long by cable standards — last Monday, answering criticisms, including one from Bill Maher that he was producing “the same kind of talking” that led Timothy McVeigh to blow up the Oklahoma City federal building in 1995.

“Let me be clear,” Mr. Beck said. “If someone tries to harm another person in the name of the Constitution or the ‘truth’ behind 9/11 or anything else, they are just as dangerous and crazy as those we don’t seem to recognize anymore, who kill in the name of Allah.”

Born in Mount Vernon, Wash., in 1964, Mr. Beck has long been a performer. His roots are in comedy — he spent years as a morning radio disc jockey — and continues to perform comedy on stages across the country.

He got into the radio business to “share my opinion in a humorous way,” but the times “are so serious now that I find myself sometimes being the guy I don’t want to be — the guy saying things that are sometimes pretty scary, but nobody else is willing to say them.”

In 2006, he joined Headline News. There, his show was taped, denying viewers some of the what-will-he-say-next quality of his live program on Fox.

On March 12 Mr. Beck introduced the 9/12 Project, an initiative to reclaim the values and principles that he said were evident the day after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. On a special broadcast he asked: “What ever happened to the country that loved the underdog and stood up for the little guy?”

When it was suggested in an interview that he sometimes sounds like a preacher, he responded, “No. You’ve never met a more flawed guy than me.”

He added later: “I say on the air all time, ‘if you take what I say as gospel, you’re an idiot.’ ”

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Brown snubbed over tax

From

Jonathan Oliver and Bojan Pancevski

GORDON BROWN’S carefully laid plans for a G20 deal on worldwide tax cuts have been scuppered by an eve-of-summit ambush by European leaders. Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, last night led the assault on the prime minister’s “global new deal” for a $2 trillion-plus fiscal stimulus to end the recession. “I will not let anyone tell me that we must spend more money,” she said. The Spanish finance minister, Pedro Solbes, also dismissed new cash being pledged at Thursday’s London summit.

“In these conditions I and the rest of my colleagues from the eurozone believe there is no room for new fiscal stimulus plans,” he said.

Nicolas Sarkozy, the French president, has insisted that “radical reform” of capitalism is more important than tax cutting.

The attacks on Brown’s ambitions for the G20 to inject more money into the world economy come at the end of a week where the prime minister has travelled to three continents to build support for his proposals.

The likely deadlock at this week’s meeting will kill any remaining hope that Alistair Darling’s April 22 budget will offer significant tax cuts.

The assault by European Union leaders also represents a defeat for President Barack Obama, who is desperate for other big economies to copy his $800 billion stimulus plan.

“There will be a very long communiqué, but there won’t be much in it,” said a Washington economist.

Adding to the disarray, a draft of the agreement Brown hopes to secure was leaked to a German news magazine, prompting suggestions of “dirty tricks” by Berlin.

The draft stated that Britain wanted a “$2 trillion” global fiscal stimulus. However, the figure appeared only in brackets, indicating agreement on the package had yet to be reached.

The stimulus would boost world growth by 2% and employment by 19m, the draft said. The rest of the document was mainly general pledges.

“We believe that an open world economy, based on the principles of the market, effective regulation and strong global institutions, can ensure sustainable globalisation with rising well-being for all,” it said.

A No 10 source expressed “disappointment” at the leak and insisted the $2 trillion figure was not new money but an expression of the total tax and spending packages already pledged by G20 members.

Privately, government officials admit that no further fiscal stimulus will be announced this week, although there will be a $250 billion package for the International Monetary Fund to help rescue struggling poor nations.

Lord Mandelson, the business secretary, said he sympathised with the concerns of demonstrators planning to disrupt the London summit. “There is understandable frustration and some anger. The global economic systems has stalled and what we have got to do is get it started.”

George Osborne, the shadow chancellor, yesterday warned Brown against further tax cuts in the budget. “When it comes to your plans for a second fiscal stimulus, I say this Gordon Brown: enough is enough,” he said in a speech. “We will not let you play roulette with the public finances yet again.”

UK officials have not given up on the idea there could be agreement on a fresh boost for the world economy later in the year. “It is likely that there will be another heads of government meeting probably in Asia in the autumn,” said an official.

“This will be the forum where the next round of stimulus will be discussed.”

Brown still hopes to establish the IMF as an informal referee for international tax cuts. The plan is that the Washington-based body could advise on the timing of any future cuts.

Merkel’s criticism drew an angry response from Labour MPs. Denis MacShane, the former Europe minister, said: “Who does Mrs Merkel think is going to buy Mercedes and BMWs if she . . . says putting demand into the economy is a bad thing?” Another Labour MP said: “One has to ask who had something to gain from the leak of the communiqué. This feels like a dirty trick.”

There are growing fears that protests at the summit venue, the ExCeL centre in London’s Docklands could be marred by violence. Scotland Yard will be deploying specialist officers trained to use 50,000-volt Taser stun guns.

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