I can't recall a nicer public spectacle than the Senate just gave us, with health care "reform".
A couple more of these -- let's say,
one on little guy protections from financial toxic emissions,
and another on Energy, Inc's carbon emissions --
oughta open wide the mass pwog cry for ending the 60-vote cloture requirement.
Paul Krugman has already plunked for it. What a sad day
for the center-aisle party that would be.
Of course I hear Father Smiff muttering darkly that "they'd just have
to find ten Joe Liebermans instead of one. They wouldn't have any problem
I dunno. Call me a giddy optimist, but I'm prepared to expect some real reforms here,
like the first term of Wilson or FDR or LBJ. The system does need to function a bit
more smoothly here at home.
Once the trans-nat titans fully grasp that
it's either a better safety net or protectionism,
they'll opt for a better safety net.
Ah, you ask, what reason do they have
to believe that the choice is ineluctable?
Good point. It wasn't, for years --
hence the splendid de-industrialization process for the last three deacdes,
even as the safety net languished.
However, the consequences of the long industrial demolishing
from the mid-90's till now
has reached the point
where signifigant further wage structure disintegration is not possible --
nothing more remains to be destroyed that can be destroyed... safely.
Even with the invention of modern usury there is a limit to squeezing,
and the social fabric mustn't rip apart at it's class seams either, eh?
Now protectionism is the jobs policy that avoids fiscal deficits.
But protectionism ruins the trans-oceanic profit slurry.
What is to be done?
The current stagnation is only a stopgap --
the wide-open trade story always had a side story.
Winners must compensate losers;
hence the safety net.
But safety net enhancements cost money, big money.
Example: for years the corporations as a whole
have wanted out
from the defined benefit biz,
including of course sponsoring health plans.
Obviously only uncle can set up this transition,
and it will require mobilizing resources. Who from?
Well, the corporates aren't about to pay more themselves.
So who else has benefited from the trans-nat racket?
We've had a dynamic in our national tax systems for decades
that has very effectively shifted most of the cost of uncle/state gub programs
to job-class strata through payroll and consumption taxes,
plus of course federal borrowing with its attendent carrying costs.
That is, of course the essence of an ideal safety net, from the
trans-nat corporate POV:
the job class pays for all the trade-induced losses themselves,
while the corporates pocket the gains.
This trick isn't working so well any more, since the job class
is pretty well tapped out.
So the trans-nats need to go after somebody who's actually made out
a bit in the globalization process.
Hmmm. How about a big chunk of the top 10%,
that directly and indirectly gained
from the de-industrial scam
-- the fuckin' self-righteous corporate parasites,
both professionals and rentiers?
Yup, now the petty rentiers must be tapped, too, if the safety net is to grow;
and just as obviously, if you need to tax merit-class rent-heavy "earned" incomes
and portfolio liberals, you need to promote the dems to top dog party status.
Nice, eh? Put 'em in power so they can tax themselves.