Pilant's Business Ethics

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Tag: tea party (Page 1 of 2)

I’m Beginning to Like Josh Barro

speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on Februar...

Ted Cruz speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on February 10, 2011. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m Beginning to Like Josh Barro

This guy can take this kind of nonsense and instead of being hurt or offended, he turns it into informative and, in a way, defiant essay. I’m impressed.

And he has a good point, this kind of passion (hatred, rage?) is frightening. As a fellow writer, I find this kind of thing daunting but as a politician it must be far more threatening because not only do these people wield influence power in the party, encountering them personally must be an exciting and memorable experience.

James Pilant

One Look At These Emails, And You’ll See Why Republicans Let Ted Cruz Lead Them Off A Cliff

http://www.businessinsider.com/heres-why-congressional-republicans-let-ted-cruz-lead-them-off-a-cliff-2013-10

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/heres-why-congressional-republicans-let-ted-cruz-lead-them-off-a-cliff-2013-10#ixzz2i1i1VxFE

The people whose letters I’m printing below are literally the people Republicans depend on to re-elect them to Congress. Keeping these people happy is their job — which is why the Republican Party has become so inept and crazy.

Jim Kennedy says I’m a “low information voter” in league with “the black racists”:

Senator Cruz is right on. I am one of those “crazy people” the liberal left does not like, being former Marine, a supporter of Tea Party, college graduate, member of NRA, member of Sons of Confederate Veterans. It is you low information voters and the black racists that hate us conservatives. Watch out in 2014!

William Neisser found me on Facebook and sent this frank message:

do you really believe the crap coming out of your mouth so 2 million people who think this Obama care isn’t good are wrong and living on another planet wow. life for you must be hard when did it become American to make people eat there vegetables. everyone has something to say but please stop talking your breath stinks like the crap you write come back to reality like the 2 million that are wrong an don’t like Obama’s health care academy for idiots thank you again yours truly screwed middle class living on another planet oh an have a great day

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/heres-why-congressional-republicans-let-ted-cruz-lead-them-off-a-cliff-2013-10#ixzz2i1hj93is

From around the web.

From the web site, The Left-handed Nib.

http://lefthandednib.wordpress.com/2013/10/12/the-gops-messiah-complex/

The GOP’s Messiah Complex

To paraphrase Dana Milbank, the Republican Party is Cruzifying itself.

Lots of good reads on Cruz in the last few days:

  • Josh Barro writes at Business Insider that “Ted Cruz is living on another planet” — and the Tea Party base is more than willing to hang out with him there.
  • This AP article is one of many I’ve seen lately that talk about how fed up establishment Republlicans are with Cruz and his Tea Party fellow crazies. But look at the establishment Republicans they’re quoting by name! …

Bulldoze: The New Way To Foreclose (via Time Magazine)

Bulldozer ChTZ B10M.jpg.

Image via Wikipedia

Let me try and understand this. The banking industry seized these homes, these precious homes, often the most valuable single thing that a family had, and having seized the home and cast away the occupants like so much chaff, they bulldoze it?

The banks do the deals because once the properties are donated they no longer have to pay taxes or for upkeep. Tax experts say the banks may also be able to get a write off for the donation. That appears to be a better deal than trying to repair some of these homes, which according to a BofA spokesperson are more economical to demolish than fix up. The local governments like these deals because they get free land to develop or use for open space. Cleveland-based Cuyahoga County Land Reuntilization Corp., which inked the deal with BofA, has been one of the most aggressive local government organizations in striking these deals. Housing economists like these deals because they remove homes from the market that would otherwise sell for a low price or not at all, dragging down home prices in general. An oversupply of homes on the market has been once of the big problems plaguing real estate. At the end of June, it would take nine and a half months for the current number of homes on the market to sell. The housing market is considered healthy when supply equals six months of sales. So taking some of these homes off the market for good could remove some of the inventory drag.

Thank God, Time Magazine is on the story. They’ll give these banks a talking to. They’ll call down the righteous ire of the oppressed down upon these home destroyers.  But wait … !!! –

The question is whether the banks will ever put up enough housing for demolition to make a difference. The Obama administration says it is working on its own plan to revamp its loan modification program in order to help keep more people in foreclosure in their homes, reducing the number of foreclosed properties on the market. Some areas of the country are looking at how to speed up foreclosures in an effort to return some normality to the market. It’s not clear that any of this will work. Certainly, the idea that we are at the point where banks would be better off knocking down houses that reselling them shows there is still something very wrong with the housing market. But what is clear is that banks and others are at the point where they are ready to try something new to boost the housing market. And that is a good sign for the future.

Time Magazine says we’re not bulldozing enough homes. That’s right. We live in a nation where the weekly press has discovered that if only the banks had the guts to bulldoze a lot more homes, things would be better.

This is the wisdom of the beltway, a never never land generally located near Washington but often and more simply a state of mind. In the beltway, the concerns of people for jobs, homes and economic security are the cries of the weak and whiny. Really important people are concerned about “who is winning” in Washington. Really important people constantly read articles about where it’s most profitable to live, where the taxes are lowest and where to invest their money. Really important people sit up and take notice of every move on the stock market and if a man has made a fortune his lack of gentlemanly qualities, overt greed, and often actual crimes means he is quoted as an authority.

Go read the magazine if you can stomach it. They simply don’t live in a middle class world. And they don’t care.

James Pilant

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Meltdown Monday: Like watching my fantasy baseball team get slaughtered, only it matters (via Minding the Workplace)

The Congressional Edifice

David Yamada and I definitely see eye to eye on this issue. I have no retirement investments on Wall Street, so I am one step further away. Still, I am very upset by the self destructive tendencies of the Congress of the United States and its effect on world markets. Meltdown Monday is another announcement that our government does not work. I’m looking to the elections in 2012. Surely we can do better than this!

James Pilant

I confess that I have spent my day alternating between semi-productive writing and e-mailing tasks and less productive glances at the stock market reports. At the bell, the Dow has finished another 600 points down. Like millions of Americans, what happens with the stock market bears directly and indirectly on my financial health. And like many fellow Americans, I am a bit player in this casino economy. Some of my retirement savings are invested i … Read More

via Minding the Workplace

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Jayaraman Rajah Iyer Comments on My Post – The Ethics Sage Wants the Politicians Gone!

Jayaraman Rajah Iyer is a buddy of mine. He comments on economic issues and always has something interesting to say and often controversial as well.

Here are his comments in full.

James Pilant

Jayaraman Rajah Iyer

I quote from my bookmark of Washington Post by Jim DeMint “On Sept. 12, 2009, millions of citizens rallied across the country. They gathered in the nation’s capital and other cities to convey a clear message: You work for us; we don’t work for you. Stop the bailouts, the takeovers, the debt and dependence”

In response to the first amendment Freedom of Speech, ‘Government for the People’ maintains stoic silence and conveys ‘yell as you like. Always, it is Government for a few people’.

In India we do have to go a long way in bringing the Government tuned to the people. Those who are trying, struggle but no comparison to the struggle of the masses who exist below poverty line, a 550 million of them. However, there are some initiatives from the government that were put through some years back, would be of considerable interest to the people of United States. It was in 1965 that the government of India brought out a compulsory Cost Audit for manufacturers of vegetable oils as an essential commodity for the masses. Every fortnight companies like Unilever had to go to the government for permission to increase the price of a tin of vegetable oil justifying in detail the cost escalation the company in question had gone through the period of 15 days. [Dr. Kaplan’s ABC that came in 1983, was in full use in 1966 by every such company providing the government with cost data analysis.] The cost audit system was successful and subsequently it was extended to very many commodities including medicine and petroleum that are in vogue even today.

Had not the Indian government introduced the cost audit we would have rich companies, poorer government and higher inflation. In US it is unthinkable that the government would intervene in the running of the companies. Today US is full of companies that are very rich, like Apple is said to have more money than the government, but government is running at loss. The US Senators and Congressmen do not realize that ‘Government for the people’ is no longer with them, it is with a few with ‘massive private gains at public loss’. Corporate Social Responsibility in US is an illusion.

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Why is the Debt Ceiling Crisis a Business Ethics Crisis?

Seal of the United States Supreme Court

Image via Wikipedia

Why is the Debt Ceiling Crisis a Business Ethics Crisis?

Because there are several serious business ethical questions involved.

We simply be in this mess without astroturfing by corporate interests. That is immoral. Creating apparently grass roots public groups with corporate money and then launching it at opponents as if it weren’t the financing corporation is blatant deception.

The hard right wing candidates would have had a great deal more difficulty getting elected without last minute infusions of corporate cash made possible by the Supreme Court’s Citizen’s United decision. The idea that a corporation is the equivalent of a person in terms of political and free speech activity is more political comedy than rational thinking. The concept that a corporation with forty billion dollars it can allocate to a political campaign should be on the same footing as a actual human being who on the average makes about 34,000 dollars a year in this country is a concept whose only value is a massive shift in political power and that is what is happening. American citizens are increasingly insignificant in the political realm. The decision was immoral. It placed the interests of powerful corporations above that of humanity.

The current economic crisis was caused by financial profiteering. Without this current depression, there would have been a great deal more tax revenue. Besides the practice of “disaster” conservatism, where any economic disaster can be exploited to impose financial hardship on the middle class, would not have been possible. Financial profiteering is immoral. It is also illegal but you couldn’t tell it by the actions of “our” government.

I can go on – blatant manipulation of our laws to directly divert public money into corporate coffers – outsourcing – avoidance of taxes – and on and on. All of these and more created our current impasse and are destroying the ability of middle class Americans to own homes, provide for their children, have stable retirements or too survive financially day to day.

We have a crisis in this government but the moral and ethical crisis of the businesses of this nation are root and branch of the problem.

We would not be in this situation without rampant ethical and moral failings in the business world. And the corruption has afflicted our government and there seems little hope of a cure.

James Pilant

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Tea Party gives Boehner a budget headache (video)

This is an animated film from Taiwan News explaining the tea party and its role in the budget impasse in the United States. It’s very strange and a mild R for scatological humor. I have not yet had an opportunity to use it as a classroom information tool. It’s a little (a lot?) strange by American standards. Tell me if you think it is suitable.

James Pilant

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Paul Krugman Says to the House of Representatives – Vote NO

Best line –

Third, the idea that a temporary disruption would permanently damage faith in US institutions now seems moot; if you haven’t already lost faith in US institutions, you’re not paying attention. 

Paul Krugman

This is from Paul Krugman’s post – If I Were In The House

Here’s his essay –

I guess I have to be explicit at this point: yes, I would vote no.

What about the catastrophe that would result? Several thoughts.

First, what I keep hearing from people who should know is that Treasury won’t actually run out of cash tomorrow, that it still has a few more days.

Second, the people who claim that terrible things would immediately happen in the markets also claimed that there would be a big relief rally once a deal was struck. Not so much: the Dow is down 121 right now.

Third, the idea that a temporary disruption would permanently damage faith in US institutions now seems moot; if you haven’t already lost faith in US institutions, you’re not paying attention.

Fourth, those legal options are still there. Obama can move now; and even if he eventually loses in the courts, that gives him time.

Sure, it’s risky. But the whole situation is immensely risky, thanks to the extremism and bloody-mindedness of the right. There are no safe options, and trying to play it safe when there is no safety lands you, well, where Obama is right now.

I fully agree. Paul Krugman is right. No deal and default is better than submitting to blackmail and creating a new forth branch of the government.

James Pilant

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36-Year Congressman John Conyers Calls for Protest Against the Debt Deal: “Thousands of People [Should Mass] In Front Of The White House To Protest This" (via Washington’s Blog)

Inflation adjusted percentage increase in mean...

Image via Wikipedia

First listen to John Conyers –

This video is courtesy of Washington’s Blog.

This budget agreement is a disaster but even more disgusting is the creation of new branch of the government –

Here’s why we don’t want a “super congress” as proposed under the debt ceiling agreement. From the article

That’s not all. If the politburo — handpicked members split evenly between the two gangs of thieves and poltroons that now hold sway on Capitol Hill — can’t agree on just how much they want to gut the budget and cut taxes for the rich, why then, this will trip a series of “triggers” which will automatically start gutting, slashing and cutting, without any vote by the democratically elected representatives whatsoever. And surely it would be superfluous in me to point out that these unaccountable “superpowers” will soon stretch to cover other areas of legislation beyond budgeting and taxes.

Behind all the flim-flammery of this manufactured “crisis”, we are watching the creation of a new form of government — or rather, the further mutation of the new form of government that the United States has been crawling toward for a long time. We called it a “neo-feudal oligarchy backed by a militarist police state” here the other day. No doubt there are many other ways you could describe this murderous, ravenous, lopsided monstrosity of a system. But the one thing you cannot call it is a “republic”.

John Conyers

Get mad. I don’t want you to do violence. I want you to be aware and to be tough with our elected officials. Let us try to change these things peacefully.

James Pilant

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The Ethics Sage Wants the Politicians in Washington Gone!

In his blog post –  Throw the Republicans and Democrats Out of Office, Steven Mintz calls for us to throw the rascals out. And he’s right. I support him 100% in his call to vote out the current incompetents.

Here are his lead in paragraphs but to get the real flavor, you need to go and read the whole thing (and, of course, put the site on your favorites!).

Steven Mintz

Politicians have lost sight of their main responsibilities — to serve the public interest, honor the public trust, and be faithful to their constituency. It’s the latter that can get them into trouble as is the case with the current budget deliberations. The republicans are driven by conservative views and the Tea Party principles based on balancing the budget, cuts in spending especially from entitlement programs and no new revenues. If this is the Tea Party manifesto then it should start to drink caffeinated coffee. This is not the time to pursue a balanced budget amendment given the government has failed to deliver one for at least the last 14 years and we are still fighting two unwinnable wars. 

The Democrats want no balanced budget amendment, limited cuts in spending programs and new revenues by raising the tax on taxpayers making over $250,000 in income. There needs to be changes in social security such as expanding the retirement date to a minimum of 65 years and a maximum 70 years. I would also recommend a slight increase in the 2.5% tax on Medicare which is low in comparison to the 6.25% rate for social security. We have an aging population that now lives longer than in the past and a slight increase in the Medicare rate is justified given the higher Medicare costs to the government.

My own opinions on our current politics have been featured in so many of postings I don’t feel the need to add to this. Besides this particular soap box belongs to the Ethics Sage.

James Pilant

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Campaign for America’s Future: Extremists Won (via Beaver County Blue)

This is from the Campaign for America’s Future. The author explains why the budget deal is a disaster. I agree with everything in the article.

The biggest disaster is to our chances of rational government. The President has handed the House or Representatives a sledgehammer to pound him to mulch anytime they want something.

James Pilant

Campaign for America's Future: Extremists Won Capitulation By Robert Borosage The raw deal on the budget ceiling has been cut. The Tea Party terrorists – the extremist faction willing to hold the economy hostage to get their way – have won. The Republic, common sense and decency have been trampled. With the economy deeply depressed, 25 million people in need of full time work, the raw deal will impede any recovery. It precludes any serious action on jobs from the federal government. It will … Read More

via Beaver County Blue

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