I got into a discussion about a proposed 28th Amendment to our Constitution a few days ago. Turns out there’s more than one proposal calling itself the 28th Amendment. I’m talking about the one that begins, “The rights protected by the Constitution of the United States are the rights of natural persons only.” There may be similar ones. There certainly are some calling themselves the 28th Amendment that address very different subjects and are totally misinformed. But the restriction of constitutional rights to natural persons is worth talking about. Read the rest of this entry »
I’ve spoken often about why sequester type budget cuts threaten a weak economy and can worsen the debt. Today I want to talk about history.
In 1787 the delegates to the Constitutional Convention struggled over the shape of Congress. Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Virginia had the largest populations. The Carolinas and Georgia realized they had far fewer people, but since the primary activity of most Americans was farm or plantation labor, they thought their size would eventually give them large populations. So they formed a six state coalition for representation in proportion to population, especially with the added voting power of three fifths the number of their slaves – turning the principle of majority rule into a deal with the devil. Read the rest of this entry »
Mitt Romney ended the suspense with the choice of Paul Ryan for Vice-President. And what did we get? Nothing! The Ryan budget for dealing with our problems is zero – no taxes, no expenses, no government. No regulation, no protection, no help, no investment. We’re in a recession and what do we get to pull out of it – nothing, zero, nada. Read the rest of this entry »
Did you hear Republican Senator Pat Toomey’s recent weekly Republican radio address. He announced that “the economy has hit a wall.” Exactly. It hit a Republican wall. Everything our government has done to bring us out of recession for the last eighty years he and his fellow Republicans have said “no” to. Read the rest of this entry »
I should begin by making clear that many of the people involved in the dispute I’m about to discuss are graduates of Albany Law where I teach, including the Governor, the District Attorney and some of the Occupiers, and I know some of them, including the District Attorney.
In this dispute about the handling of the Occupy Albany movement, I have nothing but praise for David Soares, District Attorney for Albany County. Soares has refused to prosecute people for participating in Occupy Albany and making plain their objection to government policies and massive inequality. Clearly Soares has better things to do. Read the rest of this entry »
A bumper sticker said “I work so that someone on welfare doesn’t.” No, I work to support captains of finance who make costly problems for everybody else, threatening their jobs, their homes and the food on the table. What the titans of finance caused doesn’t compare with what little the rest of us can do to affect the economy. Read the rest of this entry »
Those who ignore history are condemned to repeat it.
In the 20s and 30s, nations tried to keep all the economic woes out of their borders. Nations competed with ever higher tariffs on imports to try to protect their internal economies. The result of course was to crash international trade, hasten and deepen the Great Depression.
In 1931 Yip Harburg wrote the working man’s anthem:
Once I built a railroad; now it’s done. Brother, can you spare a dime? Read the rest of this entry »
The president thinks that it’s only fair for the wealthy to pay no smaller proportion of their income than the middle class. Cong. Boehner calls that “class war.”
• Boehner wants to put the burden of government on the middle class. But that’s not class war. Read the rest of this entry »
I’m going to be away for a few weeks and it looks like all heck will be breaking loose in Washington while I’m away. Meanwhile, I’ve been trying to figure out President Obama’s options. Read the rest of this entry »
I’ve had a lot to say recently about the economic snake oil being poured in the House of Representatives. I’ve been talking about it because it’s so current. Mishandling the economy has become a Republican trademark since the Great Depression, and they’re so impressed by their foolishness that they keep repeating the same time-tested mistakes. I’ve been talking about it because it is going to do so much harm. But the truth is, it is not what I think is the most important issue facing us. Read the rest of this entry »