The wealthy are turning America into their personal possession. And they don’t care one bit if the 99 percent rot. But it would not be happening without the politicians who make the tax laws. Both parties have sold their souls to wealthy special interests so that they can keep power:
The wealthiest 400 American families paid an 8.2% average rate on their federal individual income taxes from 2010 to 2018, according to a White House analysis published Thursday.
Those richest 400 families represent the top 0.0002% of all taxpayers, according to the White House report.
Their estimated tax rate, paid on $1.8 trillion of income over the nine-year period, is "low" relative to other taxpayers, according to the report, which was authored by economists in the Council of Economic Advisers and Office of Management and Budget.
By comparison, Americans paid an average 13.3% tax rate on their income in 2018, according to a Tax Foundation analysis. (This figure includes all taxpayers, including the wealthiest.)
Members of the MAGA cult (including members of Congress) have a problem distinguishing between loyalty to Trump and loyalty to the constitution. They are not the same. It doesn’t help that the leader of the cult has no loyalty to anything but himself:
A federal judge rejected the argument that US Capitol rioters held in jail are being prosecuted for their political views and disavowed attempts to downplay the magnitude of the deadly insurrection during a sentencing on Wednesday.
"You called yourself and everyone else patriots, but that’s not patriotism," Judge Amy Berman Jackson said of defendant Karl Dresch. "Patriotism is loyalty to country, loyalty to the Constitution, not loyalty to a head of state. That is the tyranny we rejected on July 4."
Jackson, known for her sharp criticism of the Trump administration’s moves, called Dresch an "enthusiastic participant" in the effort "to subvert democracy, to stop the will of the people and replace it with the will of the mob."
And she is right. They put their vacation plans above saving fellow Americans from being thrown out of their homes without a roof over their heads:
New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is calling fellow Washington Democrats “cowards” for failing to extend a moratorium on evicting Americans during the pandemic, which after roughly 8 months of protection has put a reported 11 million Americans in jeopardy of losing shelter.
“The House and House leadership had the opportunity to vote to extend the moratorium and there was, frankly, a handful of conservative Democrats in the House that threatened to get on planes rather than hold this vote,” Cortez said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “We have to call a spade a spade. We cannot in good faith blame the Republican Party when House Democrats have a majority.”
Today Biden announced a new moratorium. Why did it take him 5 days? Well, it took Cori Bush and AOC’s strong words and actions to make him do the right thing. Because on his own Biden won’t ever do the right thing:
Don’t like McCain. But she is right on this one. Bezos wants to buy a reputation like most retired billionaires whom build a fortune by exploiting their labor. Bezos is no different:
Though Amazon scion and billionaire Jeff Bezos’ excursion into space was a cause for excitement for some, soon-to-be-former "The View" co-host Meghan McCain had some questions after retweeting a Mashable article highlighting the indignities Amazon employees were forced to endure.
"I know this space tourism is really exciting for some," McCain tweeted. "But I just keep thinking about how Jeff Bezos employees have to pee in water bottles because they don’t get bathroom breaks and where all this money could have gone for 7 minutes of an ego stroke."
The World is headed for disaster. For many reasons. But in America, in particular, the two-party system has ceased to do anything remotely right. Therefore we cannot provide leadership to any other country:
Between COVID and the climate, you have to wonder if humankind is capable of saving itself. I am not convinced. We’re getting too much fresh evidence that people — enough of them, anyway — will go out of their way to avoid solving the very challenging problems that face us. The outlook is grim.
So how are we in this mess?
What climate skepticism and vaccine hesitancy have in common, to a great extent, is that they both deny reality — about the nature of an urgent problem in the former case, about the possibility of a solution in the latter. Both are also largely (but not exclusively) phenomena of the right.
If one chooses to be sympathetic and squint a bit, climate denial can seem a bit understandable: The consequences of warming seemed decades away, something to be dealt with later rather than make any sacrifices or big changes right now. (Collectively, it seems our species probably would fail the Stanford marshmallow experiment.) The incentives for the advocates of denial were also easy to comprehend: Energy companies have spent untold sums of money over the years to block action and seed doubts about the reality of climate change. There were plenty of folks happy to take the check.
It’s bad enough he has work in a labor market that treats workers poorly, but in addition suffer racial harassment. Does Musk know what’s going on? Does he care?
Aaron Craven, a Black worker at Tesla’s Fremont factory, said in a sworn statement he had been called the N-word "approximately 100 times," and saw KKK signs and swastika graffitied in bathroom stalls. Workers submitted 103 declarations in March 2021 as part 2017 lawsuit suing Tesla for racial harassment.
"I was directly called n
Should this be happening? And what is Biden doing about it. Gun violence is out of control:
Last year, the United States saw record numbers of gun sales, and it strained the FBI’s background check process, meaning more background checks were left incomplete. If an FBI background check is delayed by more than three business days, gun dealers can legally sell a firearm without a completed background check.
According to FBI data analyzed by Five Thirty-Eight, the bureau ran 12,761,328 background checks in 2020. That’s 50 percent more than in earlier years. And because of the soaring rates of gun sales, the FBI was also unable to complete 316,000 background checks during the first nine months of last year. Five Thirty-Eight also noted that the total of incomplete background checks for last year is certainly higher than that, as gun sales typically spike in the last three months of the year. In October, November, and December 2020 alone, the FBI opened 3.4 million background checks.
Shocking. But no one in government will do anything about. The beat goes on:
Four NYPD officers say in new sworn declarations that an off-the-books arrest quota system targeted Black and Latino New Yorkers — with one cop recalling a white supervisor asking, “Are you going to take someone’s freedom today?”
The new documents, which will soon be filed in Manhattan federal court, add further detail to a long-running lawsuit launched by four other minority officers claiming they faced retaliation for not arresting enough people of color. White officers allegedly did not face the arrest expectations.
Officer Charles Spruill, who retired in 2014, has come forward to claim he was yelled at on a daily basis to meet arrest quotas.
It’s called white privilege justice:
A St. Louis couple who gained notoriety for pointing guns at social justice demonstrators last year pleaded guilty Thursday to misdemeanor charges and agreed to give up the weapons they used during the confrontation.
Patricia McCloskey pleaded guilty to misdemeanor harassment and was fined $2,000. Her husband, Mark McCloskey, pleaded guilty to misdemeanor fourth-degree assault and was fined $750.
When several hundred demonstrators marched past their home in June of 2020, the couple waved weapons at them. They claimed the protesters were trespassing and that they feared for their safety.