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Austerity-boosting Politicians vs. Reality, History, and the 99%

It appears that neither the Democrats nor the Republicans are remotely familiar with basic economics, U.S. history, or the damage already wrought by Paul Krugman’s aptly named “Confidence Fairy.” If either party DID have a clue, they’d know that we can’t shrink our way to growth, we SPENT our way out of the Depression, and austerity is about as good for the present economy as the Iraq War was for American prestige.

Over the past few years the public sector has shed millions of jobs and state budgets have been repeatedly slashed — sparing corporate welfare and tax cuts for the top 1%, of course — and the economy continues to stall.

While the GOP persists in behaving like spoiled brats — incapable of reasoning, fair dealing, or considering the nation’s well being — Obama and the Dems continue to BEG for a “Bargain” that plunders Medicare and Medicaid while locking in the permanent contraction of our economy.

Has no one in D.C. read Naomi Klein’s essential “The Shock Doctrine?” If they had, they might realize that the deficit hawks are demanding precisely the measures that our international banks have classically used to break the spines of nations we wished to enslave: drastic cuts to social spending; downward pressure on wages; an all-out assault on organized labor; and privatization, privatization, privatization (with thrice the waste, fraud, and abuse of government — and none of the irksome transparency).

Solutions are obvious: invest heavily in our crumbling infrastructure (creating J-O-B-S), transition to sustainable energy (earning economic competitiveness, energy independence, and crucial environmental benefits), and embrace single-payer healthcare, saving over $400 billion per year and yielding far better health outcomes than under our present, horribly broken and cruel, system.

The problem is our elections are so corrupt that neither party is capable of proposing obvious remedies, even with America’s future on the line. We’re divided and nearly conquered, but there’s still time for the Tea Party to “Occupy” America with the rest of us. Last call, folks: Raise a ruckus or join the Third World. Don’t wait for Obama or Mitt to do it. They represent merely two brands of the same lousy product.

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