By Robert Reich, Robert Reich's blog
11 March 15
3 Biggest Myths Blinding Us to the Economic Truth
1. The “job creators” are CEOs, corporations, and the rich, whose taxes must be low in order to induce them to create more jobs. Rubbish. The real job creators are the vast middle class and the poor, whose spending induces businesses to create jobs. Which is why raising the minimum wage, extending overtime protection, enlarging the Earned Income Tax Credit, and reducing middle-class taxes are all necessary.2. The critical choice is between the “free market” or “government.” Baloney. The free market doesn’t exist in nature. It’s created and enforced by government. And all the ongoing decisions about how it’s organized – what gets patent protection and for how long (the human genome?), who can declare bankruptcy (corporations? homeowners? student debtors?), what contracts are fraudulent (insider trading?) or coercive (predatory loans? mandatory arbitration?), and how much market power is excessive (Comcast and Time Warner?) – depend on government.
3. We should worry most about the size of government. Wrong. We should worry about who government is for. When big money from giant corporations and Wall Street inundate our politics, all decisions relating to #1 and #2 above become rigged against average working Americans.
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MEDIA FAIL: ABC’s “Secret Online Life” Story Leads to Secret Edits
by Jeff A. Taylor
ABC News took the Boston Marathon bombing prosecution’s spin at face value — and quickly regretted it. Instead of correcting it, though, ABC just made stealthy changes to its online story. Who’s got the secret online life now?
TUNE IN: WhoWhatWhy Editor-in-Chief Russ Baker is appearing on The Power Hour, speaking with guest host Jack Blood at 9:30 a.m. EDT this Thursday, March 12. Russ and Jack will be talking about the Boston trial and other stories in the news. Click here to tune into the live stream.
Russ will also appear on SiriusXM this Friday, March 13, at 8 p.m. EDT. He’ll be interviewed about presidential dynasties on American Latino Radio‘s “Bill Santiago Show.”
WHOHow Governments Twist Terrorism
Former CIA officer Philip Giraldi examines the use and abuse of terrorism definitions and designations by governments around the world. The ability of governments to craft and re-work the definition of “terrorism” allows them to paint enemies with a broad brush, gloss over their own deadly excesses and feed a growing “anti-terrorism industry.” That’s a business which hears the cash register ring each time a government declares another front in the intentionally amorphous “war on terror.”
AP Sues State Department, Seeking Access to Clinton Records
Hillary’s much-discussed press conference on “Emailgate” did little to convince critics that she’s come clean about the real reason for using a private email server for official business. The “inconvenience” argument — that she simply didn’t want to use two devices for two accounts — hasn’t stopped speculation that she’s got something to hide. She certainly didn’t convince "The Associated Press," which filed suit today to force the State Department to release all emails and official documents from Hillary’s tenure at Foggy Bottom.
Russians See U.S. Presence In Latvia As A Prelude To War
Wouldn’t it be interesting to see the reaction of the U.S. government, the media and the American people if Russia sent 3,000 troops and 75 tanks to participate in “training exercises” in Mexico? Just sayin’ … what if the combat boot was on the other foot?
WHATGet Ready for Oil Deals: Shale Is Going on Sale
There are many factors driving the sharp decline in oil prices. It’s about bankrupting Russia, Iran and Venezuela. It’s about undercutting the acceleration in renewable energy investment — particularly solar. It’s about stimulating consumers to purchase more by putting some bucks back in their pockets. But the most important outcome of the prolonged drop may be that it is pricing debt-laden small- and medium-sized companies out of the business. And guess who will be there to scoop up those companies and their oil and gas reserves?
Coincidentally, Chevron has $13 billion in cash just sitting around, and another $43 billion of its own shares to tap for a little spending money. Go figure.
WHYUS Military Hopes to Learn from Victim of Chimp Attack
Although Charla Nash never served in the military, the Pentagon paid for her full-face transplant after she was brutally attacked by rampaging chimpanzee. Tracking her recovery, along with other transplant recipients, is part of the military’s long-term research program to test the feasibility of face transplants. The hope is that the complicated procedure can ultimately be applied to soldiers who’ve been disfigured in combat.