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From its pyramid-shaped throne on the back of a dollar bill…

By Tony Norman, @Common Dreams

“I am the god of the 1 percent. You shall have no other gods before me. I help those who help themselves and visit poverty over many generations to those who would redistribute the wealth that I have freely given to those who luxuriate without guilt in my love. I reward the spirit of material excess because I hate poverty and the poor who have rejected my ways.

“I am a vulgar god who never tires of the misery perpetuated by those who exploit the resources of the planet for tax breaks and personal gain. The smoke of belching coal plants and runoff from hydraulic fracturing pleases me. Let those who refuse to rape the earth that I have made in six days be accursed.

“I am the god of ‘In God We Trust.’ You shall have no other gods before me. Give to the poor (if you must) out of your excess and at your discretion. Don’t be compelled by guilt. The poor don’t need a safety net as long as I, the god of the Koch brothers and Ayn Rand, lives in the heart of every patriotic American. It is money that I love, not mercy for its own sake. Mercy without conditions offends me.

“I am the god of the morally upright. I abhor homosexuals, Democrats, mimes and all who believe in global warming. Those who have AIDS can give all glory to me. It is by my hand that every dread disease except obesity and cancer is visited upon the earth. Do not be fooled: I loathe the followers of Lady Gaga. Women who refuse to submit to male authority are an abomination.

“Those who believe in me know evolution is a lie straight from hell. The dinosaurs drowned during Noah’s day because the ark couldn’t contain them. This is not a mystery if you believe science is evil with all your heart.

“I am the god of war. I love violence and the mindless proliferation of guns in every home. Horses and bayonets proclaim my glory over the whole earth. That is why America is my blood-stained footstool. Guns don’t kill — I do.

“I am the god of the Invisible Hand. I hate the 47 percent who siphon the productivity of my blessed Job Creators. On Election Day, I will pour out my wrath on those who receive the mark of the Kenyan Keynesian. Repent of your idolatrous liberalism, or else.”

No fear…

Is what happens when a single parent gets $10 more a week in food stamp money.

Or as Dr Black put it… “Given the eagerness of the powers that be to aim the free money bazooka at anything resembling a failing giant bank, the incentives for those running them aren’t to try to limp along through troubled times, but instead to blow themselves up spectacularly.” Nope, no moral hazard in that at all.

You’ve all heard that old canard about Bankers jumping from high-rise office windows on Black Tuesday. It’s just that, a canard. History rewritten by those in a position to get away with it. They didn’t jump. They were thrown. Rightfully so.

All you freaks blind with budget cutting bloodlust ought to give that some thought, before you lay off any more cops. They’re all that stands between you and me. And I’ve got no problem if they gun me down, as long as I take a few of you with me.

ROTFLMAO - Men Too Hormonal and Moody to Make Sound Financial Decisions

Bad news for the global economy: Men – who run everything, still – are so beholden to fluctuations in their ever-zany hormones they may doom the system through inevitable, stupid, testosterone-fueled mistakes. So says a new book on biology’s role in market behavior, based on research that analyzed traders’ spit during market sessions and found that men are having their periods, like, all the time, so beware.

“Market participants aren’t the rational automatons of most financial theory. They are biological organisms responding with a neural and physiological apparatus designed millions of years ago.”

Put ‘em in jail… Byr Savings Bank former Chairman Jon Thorsteinn Jonsson and the lender’s ex-Chief Executive Officer Ragnar Zophonias Gudjonsson were found guilty of fraud and sentenced to four and half years in prison by Iceland’s Supreme Court.

“If you don’t know multiple people who are suffering, then you must be living in a very rarefied environment,” he said in a brief address to the Netroots Nation conference. “You must be maybe a member of the [Walden] clan or something.”

“None of this has to be happening. We didn’t have a plague of locusts, we were not hit by a tsunami, there wasn’t some act of God that created this terrible situation. It was acts of man.” … “Solving this depression is not fundamentally an economic problem, it’s a political problem.” ~ Paul Krugman, mostly

The recent book “How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion and Class War” includes a chapter discussing in detail America’s student loan racket.

It explains a disturbing government/corporate partnership. Students are exploited for profit. Providers are enriched. For many, rising tuition and fees make higher education unaffordable. Others need large loans to attend. As a result, they become debt entrapped.

Some face burdens up to $100,000 or higher. If unpaid after 30 years, it’s a $500,000 obligation. If one defaults or declares bankruptcy, it’s unforgiven. Bondage is permanent.

Lenders thrive from defaults. Wages can be garnished. So can portions of Social Security and other retirement benefits. A conspiratorial alliance of lenders, guarantors, servicers, and collection companies derive income from debt service and inflated collection fees…

I don’t know if the guy who said that was being a little flamboyant, but, ultimately, yes. Here’s the problem with banking. People have described a banker as someone who is willing to lend you an umbrella on a sunny day, ie, if you really need the money, you can’t get it. As I said in Bailout Nation, the history of commercial credit has, for millions of years, been based on the borrower’s ability to service the debt. What took place from 2002 to 2007 is that the borrower’s ability to service the debt was replaced with a new standard for making loans. That standard wasn’t, “Hey, how do we fuck the poor?” but it was the ability of the lender to sell that debt to a Wall Street securitiser. ~Barry Ritholtz, author of Bailout Nation

While the rest of the global economy flows out to the sewer.

If it has slipped your mind, there’s quite a bit of evidence in the public record of systematic fraud in the Rocket Scientists’ of Finance creation of the home equity bubble. Neither Obama nor the Democratic Party leadership on the Hill seem particularly concerned. So to, it appears, with our State and District Attorneys.

This picture will make you think forgiving student debt isn’t so crazy after all.

Trust-funder punks who have never done a day’s real work in their lives Willard Romney and Greg Walden’s (Oregon’s own Willard Romney) response: first, as he’s promised before, Romney intends to divert money away from student aid — instead giving it to banks — by repealing Obama’s student loan reforms:

Reverse President Obama’s nationalization of the student loan market and welcome private sector participation in providing information, financing, and the education itself.

As the US Supreme Court tries to decide if it’s unconstitutional to take care of our own, an instructive look at the bewilderment of Germans and other Europeans at the phobic opposition to health reform in a country that spends more than any developed nation on health care, ranks last in preventable deaths, boasts over 80 million uninsured adults, and professes Christian ideals.

Yeah, we’re bewildered too.


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