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Thread: Egos and Immortality

  1. #11
    SiriuslyLong is offline
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    When in doubt, avoid.

    This is tremendously well documented. The zealous left will not relent. It goes accross their blind ideology. To them, it's all about greedy banks and a failure of capitalism.......... Government policy can do no harm. This is indeed a case study in ignorance.

  2. #12
    Havakasha is offline
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    Reading Mr. Siriuslywrongs one would think he writes all the stuff for Fox News.
    Most people i know have a very balanced view of the situation. They certainly
    know that Govt is not perfect. Afterall Republicans control a large part of govt.
    But money in politics has led to people with huge amounts of money having a
    disproportionate amount of control over the legislative process.

    We have had a lot buyers' remorse--where's the bankers' remorse? Apparently bankers don't have any. Bad sign.

    There was an excellent article in the 3/19/12 New Yorker about the selfish, greedy, self-centered Wall St. crowd called "Tax Me If You Can." The length to which some of these dark-side financial wizards will go to avoid paying taxes is neurotic (within the individual) and socially pathological (serious harm done to others and the larger society/world).

    And if you want to know what their personal lives are like, talk to some of their ex-wives.

    Humans are social creatures. Some social scientists say we could not and cannot survive without each other. We don't have the attributes of other animals, such as fast running, keen sense of smell, ability to fly away fast, or naturally camouflaged to hide easily.

    What has kept our species going is our tendency to bond and band together to help and protect each other against the environment as well as other bands of humans.

    We are currently witnessing what happens when the human asset of social bonding breaks down, & some members of the species gain economic power but are so egotistical and morally bereft that they no longer care about other individuals, humanity, or the common good of their society.

    I doubt we will see any major personality changes from these banker types--you cannot rehabilitate people who don't have a conscience--all the more reason to regulate their activities & tax them. For the common good!
    Last edited by Havakasha; 05-30-2012 at 10:50 AM.

  3. #13
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    BurkettAustin, TXNYT Pick
    Those with thin skin often warrant a bit of empathy - but not in this instance. Wall Street bruised egos translate into multi-million$ being spent to buy as many elected officials throughout the country as possible. And more millions doled out to K Street guys who engage in strong-arm tactics to insure laws passed that are favorable to bankers.

    MSNBC's Dylan Rattigan on Thursday made the perfect analogy: Wall Street's banksters are the new Mafia. Give us what we want or we'll destroy you. Play nice and contribution$ to your coffers will know no bounds. But, diss us or try to regulate us, and money you so desperately need for your campaigns will vanish.

    On the other side is this, which I heard from a caller to a local radio show: In a city such as Austin there is a flood of start-ups by innovative, creative people. Getting their ideas off the drawing board and into the marketplace very often depends on venture capitalists willing to provide them the necessary funding.

    Before hearing the caller I was more than happy to brand the Bains of the world as self-serving pariahs. Now I better see they can be of worth to a hopeful someone with a good idea. However, applying the term 'job creator', is still too great a stretch.

  4. #14
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    Right-Wing Billionaires Behind Mitt Romney
    They're trying to buy a presidency - and they expect a big payoff on their investment

    By TIM DICKINSON
    May 24, 2012 9:55 AM ET
    Presidential politics has always been a rich man's game. But now, thanks to the Supreme Court ruling in Citizens United that upended decades of limits on campaign donations, financing a presidential race is the exclusive domain of the kind of megadonor whose portfolios make Mitt Romney look middle-class. "I have lots of money, and can give it legally now," Texas billionaire and top GOP moneyman Harold Simmons recently bragged to The Wall Street Journal. "Just never to Democrats."

    In past elections, big donors like Simmons gave millions for advocacy groups like Swift Boat Veterans for Truth. By law, such groups were only allowed to run issue ads – but instead they directly targeted John Kerry, drawing big fines from the Federal Elections Commission. Now, with the blessing of the Supreme Court, the wealthy can legally hand out unlimited sums to groups that openly campaign for a candidate, knowing that their "dark money" donations will be kept entirely secret. The billionaire Koch brothers, for instance, have reportedly pledged $60 million to defeat President Obama this year – but their off-the-book contributions don't appear in any FEC filings.

    Even more money from megadonors is flowing into newly created Super PACs, which, unlike advocacy groups, can spend every cent they raise on direct attacks on an opponent. Under the new rules, the richest men in America are plying candidates with donations far beyond what Congress intended. "They can still give the maximum $2,500 directly to the campaign – and then turn around and give $25 million to the Super PAC," says Trevor Potter, general counsel of the Campaign Legal Center. A single patron can now prop up an entire candidacy, as casino magnate Sheldon Adelson did with a $20 million donation to the Super PAC backing Newt Gingrich.

    The undisputed master of Super PAC money is Mitt Romney. 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.

    That capitulation is evident in Romney's campaign. Most of the megadonors backing his candidacy are elderly billionaires: Their median age is 66, and their median wealth is $1 billion. Each is looking for a payoff that will benefit his business interests, and they will all profit from Romney's pledge to eliminate inheritance taxes, extend the Bush tax cuts for the superwealthy – and then slash the top tax rate by another 20 percent. Romney has firmly joined the ranks of the economic nutcases who spout the lie of trickle-down economics. "Support from billionaires has always been the main thing keeping those charlatans and cranks in business," Krugman noted. "And now the same people effectively own a whole political party."

    Here are the 16 donors who have given at least $1 million each to elect Romney – and what they expect in return for their investment:


    William Koch
    Lawrence Lucier/FilmMagic
    THE COKE DEALER: William Koch

    Position The "other" Koch brother, Bill sold his stake in Koch Industries to brothers David and Charles in the 1980s. He now runs Oxbow Carbon, a global dealer in petroleum coke, a cement-manufacturing fuel that's high in climate-warming carbon dioxide.
    Age 72
    Fortune $4 billion (Forbes 400 rank: 81)
    Past Donations Koch and his wife gave $70,000 to House Speaker John Boehner last year. Boehner "looks out for business interests," a Koch deputy explained.
    Current Donations Gave $2 million to Romney's Super PAC, including $250,000 in his own name, $750,000 through Oxbow Carbon and another $1 million through a subsidiary. A sister company of Oxbow operates a Colorado mine that sells coal to the federal government – meaning that its campaign contribution is subsidized, in part, by taxpayers.
    What He Wants To pollute for free. Koch's fortune is tied up in some of the nation's dirtiest industries. He blasts the EPA, which has been trying to crack down on carbon pollution, as "hyper*aggressive."
    How He Lives His wine collection, which includes 40,000 bottles, is worth $12 million. Owns a mansion in Palm Beach, a vacation villa in Cape Cod, four properties near Aspen worth $47.5 million, and a cattle ranch in Colorado decorated with an Old West ghost town that he bought for $3 million and moved to his land. Purchased the only known photograph of Billy the Kid.


    Harold Simmons
    REUTERS /FLOR CORDERO /LANDOV
    THE WASTE BARON: Harold Simmons

    Position Traffics in toxic chemicals and hazardous waste as head of Contran; owns one of the world's largest producers of titanium. A former corporate raider nicknamed "Ice Man," he pioneered the leveraged-buyout tactics that decimated American industry.
    Age 81
    Fortune $9.8 billion (Forbes rank: 33)
    Past Donations Spent $3 million to Swift-boat John Kerry in 2004, and another $2.8 million in 2008 on "issue ads" linking Obama to Sixties radical Bill Ayers. "If we had run more ads," he lamented, "we could have killed Obama."
    Current Donations Before backing Romney with $800,000, Simmons made $1 million bets on Rick Perry, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum. His total giving of $16.7 million makes him the GOP's second-largest investor after Adelson. Most of the cash went to American Crossroads, the Super PAC founded by Karl Rove that has close ties to the Romney campaign.
    What He Wants Plans to store radioactive waste from 36 states in an underground dump in Texas; has been sued repeatedly by the Justice Department for failing to clean up contaminated Superfund sites. Calls Obama "the most dangerous American alive, because he would eliminate free enterprise in this country."
    How He Lives Doles out $100 bills to panhandlers. Jets between his coastal estate in California, his Arkansas ranch stocked with 35 bears and 100 elk, and his $4 million mansion on a private lake in Dallas, surrounded by 17,000 tulips.



    Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics...#ixzz1wKKnUjYk

  5. #15
    SiriuslyLong is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Havakasha View Post
    PBManlius NYNYT Pick
    We have had a lot buyers' remorse--where's the bankers' remorse? Apparently bankers don't have any. Bad sign.

    There was an excellent article in the 3/19/12 New Yorker about the selfish, greedy, self-centered Wall St. crowd called "Tax Me If You Can." The length to which some of these dark-side financial wizards will go to avoid paying taxes is neurotic (within the individual) and socially pathological (serious harm done to others and the larger society/world).

    And if you want to know what their personal lives are like, talk to some of their ex-wives.

    Humans are social creatures. Some social scientists say we could not and cannot survive without each other. We don't have the attributes of other animals, such as fast running, keen sense of smell, ability to fly away fast, or naturally camouflaged to hide easily.

    What has kept our species going is our tendency to bond and band together to help and protect each other against the environment as well as other bands of humans.

    We are currently witnessing what happens when the human asset of social bonding breaks down, & some members of the species gain economic power but are so egotistical and morally bereft that they no longer care about other individuals, humanity, or the common good of their society.

    I doubt we will see any major personality changes from these banker types--you cannot rehabilitate people who don't have a conscience--all the more reason to regulate their activities & tax them. For the common good!
    This guy is wrong. We survive because of intellegence not because we "bond and band together". That's simply more liberal "collective" ideology.

  6. #16
    SiriuslyLong is offline
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    And now a Koch Brother article?

    Way off point.

    Had the Free Housing Market Enhancement Act of 2003 been accepted by liberal democrats, we very well may have avoided the catastrophic housing bubble that hurt many Americans (including me as my IRA never fully recovered).

    Your political party hurt many Americans. Sad but certainly true.

  7. #17
    Havakasha is offline
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    This is a quote from MY original thread.

    "But here’s the thing: If Wall Streeters are spoiled brats, they are spoiled brats with immense power and wealth at their disposal. And what they’re trying to do with that power and wealth right now is buy themselves not just policies that serve their interests, but immunity from criticism."


    This article is completely relevant.

    Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics...#ixzz1wKKnUjYk

  8. #18
    Havakasha is offline
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    Just one example:

    THE QUANT MASTER: Robert Mercer

    Position Co-CEO of Renaissance Technologies, a pioneer of the high-frequency "quantitative" trading that was implicated in the 2010 "flash crash" – one of the steepest one-day drops in Wall Street's history.
    Age 65
    Fortune Made $125 million in 2011 alone.
    Past Donations Financed a $1 million ad campaign to stop the so-called "Ground Zero mosque." Founded his own Super PAC, Concerned Taxpayers of America, to target Democrats who speak out against Wall Street.
    Current Donations Gave $1 million to Romney's Super PAC and $350,000 to the Club for Growth, an advocacy group devoted to lowering taxes for the wealthy.
    What He Wants To squelch a proposed tax on stock transactions – a move that would limit his ability to game the market with algorithm-crunching computers.



    Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics...#ixzz1wMM8FbGD

  9. #19
    Havakasha is offline
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    http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0512/76849.html



    By MIKE ALLEN and JIM VANDEHEI | 5/30/12 4:34 AM EDT

    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, according to officials familiar with the groups’ internal operations.

    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. POLITICO has learned that Koch-related organizations plan to spend about $400 million ahead of the 2012 elections - twice what they had been expected to commit.

    Just the spending linked to the Koch network is more than the $370 million that John McCain raised for his entire presidential campaign four years ago. And the $1 billion total surpasses the $750 million that Barack Obama, one of the most prolific fundraisers ever, collected for his 2008 campaign.

    (PHOTOS: Republican money men)

    Restore Our Future, the super PAC supporting Mitt Romney, proved its potency by spending nearly $50 million in the primaries. Now able to entice big donors with a neck-and-neck general election, the group is likely to meet its new goal of spending $100 million more.

    And American Crossroads and the affiliated Crossroads GPS, the groups that Rove and Ed Gillespie helped conceive and raise cash for, are expected to ante up $300 million, giving the two-year-old organization one of the election’s loudest voices.

    “The intensity on the right is white-hot,” said Steven Law, president of American Crossroads and Crossroads GPS. “We just can’t leave anything in the locker room. And there is a greater willingness to cooperate and share information among outside groups on the center-right.”

    In targeted states, the groups’ activities will include TV, radio and digital advertising; voter-turnout work; mail and phone appeals; and absentee- and early-ballot drives.

    The $1 billion in outside money is in addition to the traditional party apparatus – the Romney campaign and the Republican National Committee – which together intend to raise at least $800 million.

    The Republican financial plans are unlike anything seen before in American politics.



    Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories...#ixzz1wMhBAVQS

  10. #20
    SiriuslyLong is offline
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    The democrats, led by Barney Frank, single handidly put us in harms way with their high ideas. Why do you vote for people who have inflicted so much damage on the American people?

    I do agree that money buys favor for BOTH democrats and republicans, and campaign finance needs reform. I also realize that the most powerful entity in the USA is the federal government. That's why you liberals want more of it, and others try influence with money.

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