Fiscal Cliff: Time to Call Their Bluff

counter-offer-wide

Ellen Brown: The fiscal cliff has been said to be holding Congress hostage to conservative demands, but the real hostages are the debt slaves of our financial system.

Walmart Gets Jeffersonian on ALEC, Freezes Membership

walmart jefferson

Bobbi Murray: Walmart is well-equipped to forge ahead despite scandal and without ALEC, tidily attending to image-protection and lobbying chores on its own. The company, after all, has carefully worked Washington circles over the last decade.

Can Obama Stop Casino Capitalism?

obama biden

Shamus Cooke: The banking oligarchy is so intertwined with the political and economic establishment that real regulatory change cannot happen until the system itself is transformed from below, by a powerful social movement. Pleading to politicians to fix so-called Casino Capitalism is increasingly naive.

Foreclosure Crisis: Bankers and Forgiveness

bank behavior

Ann Robertson and Bill Leumer: Why is the government so intent on pursuing a double standard when it comes to enforcing the law on the 1 percent and on the rest of us?

What the Walmart Whistleblower Said

wal-mex

Bobbi Murray: Walmart de Mexico (called “Walmex”—no kidding) was alleged to have spread around $24 million or so in bribes to make sure Walmart’s presence there expanded at a rate that eclipsed the competition.

The Tinder-Box Society

poverty

Robert Reich: Most of the gains from the productivity revolution are going to the owners of capital, while typical workers are either unemployed or underemployed, or else getting wages and benefits whose real value continues to drop.

Walmart Trying to Open First LA Grocery Store, Major Fight Looms

chinatown walmart grocery

LAANE: Small business leaders have expressed serious concerns about Walmart’s impact on existing businesses, while opponents have long maintained that Walmart’s entry into the grocery industry would create a race to the bottom

A Government Overwhelmed by Corporate Money

corporate regulations

Robert Reich: American business won’t and can’t lead the way to more and better jobs in the United States. First, the private sector is increasingly global, with less and less stake in America. Second, it’s driven by the necessity of creating profits, not better jobs.

Occupy Wall Street: Separating Fact from Media

walter brasch

Walter Brasch: Even the most oblivious recognize the protestors as a large cross-section of America. They are students and teachers; housewives, plumbers, and physicians; combat veterans from every war from World War II to the present.

Sheared by the Shorts: How Speculators Fleece Investors

ellen brown

Ellen Brown: When done on a large enough scale, short selling can force prices down, allowing assets to be picked up very cheaply.

Republican Double-Dip: What Must Be Done

bull market

Robert Reich: Now that we’re slouching toward a double-dip recession, the only hope is voters will tell their members of Congress to stop obsessing about future budget deficits and get to work on the real crisis of unemployment, falling wages, and no growth.

The Carnage on Wall Street

media-watchdog-wide

Robert Reich: Our representatives in the nation’s capital continue to obsess about future budget deficits and games of chicken over raising the debt ceiling — neither of which has anything at all to do with the stalled recovery and the carnage on the Street.

The Oil Company Gusher

hearing-oil-wide

Robert Reich: This gusher is an embarrassment for an industry seeking to keep its $4 billion annual tax subsidy from the U.S. government, at a time when we’re cutting social programs to reduce the budget deficit.

War and Workers

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Lydia Howell: Whether it’s debt-ridden college graduates working as baristas or small town youth with only fast-food and Wal-Mart as post-high school career options, high unemployment keeps a volunteer military ranks full.

Wall Street’s Birthday Nothing to Crow About

wall street

Robert Reich: Happy Birthday Wall Street. Party away. Just know that most Americans aren’t joining the celebration.

The Jobs Report, and America’s Two Economies

looking for work

Robert Reich: With corporate profits are through the roof, the Dow is flirting with 12,000, Wall Street paychecks are fat again, and big corporations are sitting on more than $1 trillion in cash, you’d expect jobs be coming back. But you’d be wrong.

The U.S. Economy in 2011

Jobs in the New Year

Robert Reich: The two American economies — the Big Money economy and the Average Working Family economy — will continue to diverge. Corporate profits will continue to rise, as will the stock market. But typical wages will go nowhere, joblessness will remain high, the ranks of the long-term unemployed will continue to rise, the housing recovery will remain stalled, and consumer confidence will sag.

The Ominous Expansion of Class-Action Suits

Walmart Corporate Welfare

Wendy McElroy: In the largest class-action lawsuit in American history, Walmart v. Dukes, Walmart stands accused of systematically discriminating against 1.5 million women in wages and promotions.

America’s Two Economies: Why One Is Recovering and the Other Isn’t

Robert Reich: Inhabitants of the Big Money economy are celebrating Republican wins last week. They figure financial regulations will be rolled back, environmental regulations will be canned, the Bush tax cut will be extended to the top 1 percent, and it will be harder for workers to form unions.

Midterm Choice: Profiteers or Bureaucrats

welfare mart

Tina Dupuy: When Republicans talk about freedom, they don’t mean the freedom to be able to drink clean water piped into your home. When they talk about freedom, they don’t mean a job that pays enough to live on. When they talk about freedom, they don’t mean not being a victim of predatory lending.

Tale of Three Bureaucracies

Bureaucracy

Ron Wolff: Could it be that we might actually get 19.1% better insurance coverage if we allowed the government to run the program? I don’t know; you tell me.

President John McCain’s First 18 Months in Office

ted vaill

Ted Vaill: President McCain has urged that the United Nations move its headquarters out of the U.S., and he has proposed that the U.S. leave the UN, which he calls “useless and corrupt”. He also has refused to meet with most foreign leaders in the White House, or to travel abroad, except for heavily guarded and secret trips to Iraq and Afghanistan.

This Week in the LA Progressive: 2 May to 8 May 2010

With articles by Robert Reich, Joseph Palermo, Charley James, Randy Shaw, Nomiki Konst, Rev. Irene Monroe, Mario Solis-Marich, Anthony Asadullah Samad, Georgianne Nienaber, Andrea Nill, Tracy Emblem, Wayne Williams, Cathy Cockrell, Tina Dupuy, Ron Wolff, Tom Degan, Shamus Cooke, Michael Sigman, David A. Love, Sharon Kyle, Bob Letcher, Robert Illes, and Ivan Eland

The (Almost) Crash of Wall Street

wall street crash

Robert Reich: Ninety minutes before the end of the trading day today, the U.S. stock market almost melted down The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped nearly 1,000 points. The market regained ground before the end, like a giant 747 narrowly averting a crash landing, but the questions of the day are: What happened? And what does it mean?

Why the Dow is Hitting 10,000 Even When Consumers Can’t Buy And Business Cries “Socialism”

Greed

The Dow is up despite the biggest consumer retreat from the market since the Great Depression because of the very thing so many executives are complaining about, which is government’s expansion.

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