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The Sham of a Fiscal Cliff

The so-called “Fiscal Cliff” is a sham that follows the Hegelian Dialectic of Problem/Reaction/Solution. The idea is to create or gin up a conflict as an “emergency” in order to plunder citizens for corporate profit. We saw it with the “emergency” the big banks declared to extort Congress into bailing them out in 2008, and we are seeing it again as Washington burns with the endless ruse of the fiscal cliff.

The end game is to weaken and eventually privatize social security for Wall Street profit (It’s the fees, Stupid). All Congress would need to do to fix the current budget shortfall is rescind the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans and responsibly cut the bloated military budget which currently exceeds the total military spending of the next 13 countries combined. Instead, we are now hearing talk from Washington about raising our income taxes and our health care costs and killing our home mortgage interest deduction.

Robert Weissman of Public Citizen, which accepts no corporate monies, writes: “CEOs of many of the nation’s richest companies are stalking the halls of Congress, spreading fear about an artificial “fiscal cliff” as a ruse to cut Social Security and Medicare – enormously popular, effective and critical programs that the rich just have never and will never like. These same CEOs, by the way, have pension benefits averaging $9 million awaiting them upon retirement. How do they have credibility talking about the “shared sacrifices” we allegedly all should be making?”

Emperor Nero Claudius Caesar used the old (even then) Problem/Reaction/Solution technique when he wanted more land in Rome for his palace. A suspicious fire destroyed huge portions of the city, but not enough for him; so a second fire started, which he blamed on Christians. Nero then tortured those he blamed for the fires, while he laid out his plans for the larger palace the torched places made possible. (Sound familiar?) The “Nero fiddled while Rome burned” story comes from this history.

Let’s not continue to fall prey to this devious Hegelian Dialectic this year. Let your representatives know you know the gambit and won’t be fooled again.

“Fool me once,” as George W Bush famously said, “shame on you. Fool me twice. . . Can’t get fooled again.”  Cheers!

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