120 Comments

I totally agree with you. I watched your film Where Do We Invade Next and saw what other countries do for health care, education, incarceration, workers rights and so many other things and I wondered what have we done to our country that we cannot have those same things. In my opinion it is all about greed and power. We seem to have lost our way and our concern for each other. Why do we have so many homeless, so many children living in poverty with not enough to eat. It literally breaks my heart. I am old and feel powerless. I can make phone calls and write letters but it seems as if no one on the other end is listening. Anyway thank you Michael for all you do to keep us hopeful but also realistic.

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💕thanks for "Where Do We Invade Next". I believe your sentiments are well shared by many. "Soul of America," as Biden would say🫶

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Yes, let's remind Biden to deepen and enhance this "Soul of America" for this Presidential campaign.

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Yes. Beautiful slogan. I had not heard him use it. And foils the faux religicos

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I believe that Allen Ginsberg said: A society that make eating a privilege and not a right, has no right to exist. Yep in the 70's We're still there. No child can learn when they are hungry, maybe starving.

We gotta share that pie with everybody! :)

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Absolutely agree......and I keep hearing that the majority is with us, so we and they had all better support great candidates like AOC and VOTE! We need to move off the edge of destruction.

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May 12, 2023·edited May 12, 2023

I totally agree with everything you're written here except the bit about the pie. Really, I'm trying to lose weight because god knows I can't depend on health care in this country. (Thanks for continuing to remind us of the vision, of the prize. We can forget it sometimes in the muckety-muck of essential-but-local-short-term struggles.)

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I wouldn't mind an extra piece of pie, if you're not gonna eat that.

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Enjoy!

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Thanks for the laugh this morning.

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Your comment made me laugh! So trued! Make sure the healthy food is way out of reach for the middle class. Just keep them pumped with BIGPharma candy.

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Sorry to be Debby Downer, but bottom line, for the physical body, it's about portion control.

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You're absolutely right, but portion control is much easier if you're eating broccoli than if you're eating pie. Just sayin'.

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American democracy has been in a free fall for 50 years. Both you and AOC speak the truth but I am not hearing any outrage from my fellow “social democrats” to the point of fighting for these rights in any effective way. We are outraged by the obvious hatred of women, LGBT, blacks, Latinos, immigrants … and on and on…(and let’s not forget to hate the impoverished and the homeless)in this country yet we then turn on CNN to listen to more lies from the Ex and have interviewers throw soft balls as questions. We never take a stand. We know Corporate America will never take a stand. I know as a Nurse Practitioner that the Healthcare system in America is too beholden to Wall Street,

Insurance Companies and Pharmaceutical Corporations to ever stand up for the average “Joe” in its care. Around and around we go, spinning more lies that we are the “greatest” country in the world when we are really a disgrace.

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you have said the truth, and nothing but the truth

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These are beautiful thoughts, Michael. It is Utopia. But, it won't work. I have often said our worst sin is GREED, and I believe it. But it has always been with us and always will be. Not all Homo sapiens are greedy, but too many are. We need to control and regulate that greed to give a fair opportunity to all. As for capitalism vs a sharing economy; wishful thinking. A well enforced, regulated, capitalism does work so long as we, the people are vigilant. That is what FDR gave us. What happened was after World War 2, we, the American people, were so caught up in our prosperity we ignored what was going on in our own back yard. We ignored the plight of our fellow human beings, we ignored the ignoramuses amongst us who blamed anyone who wasn't white, Anglo-Saxon, religious for any and all woes. We ignored the military industrial complex who had all these new toys to play with and needed a new sandbox to try them out. We ignored the creeping de-regulation and accumulation of wealth until we are suffocating under it. As Ben Franklin reportedly said, "a republic, if you can keep it." He knew it took vigilance and constancy to keep it. It would be nice if all of us would work together, share, appreciate the differences. But I'm 90 and I haven't seen even an attempt to reclaim that world since 1973. I sure hope you youngsters can bring it back.

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we need to change the electoral system. We need to change the way we vote we need to take money out of politics radically absolutely people cannot buy TV advertisement to lie to the people the way to happen with Fox News that we go to war some weed kill all our kids based on a lie that gets propagated because people come pay for it.

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I recall the saying of the ancient Greeks: "Those whom the gods wish to utterly destroy, they first send 30 years of unbroken success."

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Since it's been closer to 40, let's hope the Greek gods were correct.

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I think we've had 40 years of failure. If the saying is correct then now is more than due time to turn things around. But the answers will never come from a singular political party. Let's hope the Republican Party can regain its sanity and rejoin the conversation - otherwise the Democratic Party is already well into its thirty years.

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All wealth is social wealth. Until our economic, political and social relations are grounded in that principle which corresponds to reality—everything we eat, wear, live in or move through space in, is produced by or made possible by, social labor of one kind or another— there can't be a healthy, functioning society which embraces all the producers and contributors to human abundance.

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"R-E-S-P-E-C-T, just a little bit..."

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Once again, you are the voice of reason, sanity, and compassion. What you described sounds like heaven on earth to me. What keeps occurring to me is that we have no unifying force- nothing to inspire us all to work together to build a better world. People seem to all be going in different directions. What I have come to deeply believe is that we haven’t evolved enough to create the kind of world you describe and the world I believe in. I hope and pray that somehow we can avoid nuclear destruction and climate catastrophe and I hope this earth can stay intact long enough to support the human species, as hopefully we continue to evolve and learn from our mistakes and realize going in different directions is alienating us from each other. We need to pull together and recognize that we are not so different from each other and if we could give voice to our hopes and dreams, we would see how alike we are. There is so much hope and fear related to artificial intelligence, but maybe it will take this to help us move ahead, if it doesn’t wind up destroying us. It is just possible that, as AI develops, it won’t put up with our shenanigans and will view us as a sorry lot, and take control. We had better get our act together, because I don’t think the angels are coming to save us from ourselves or they would have come long ago. I may sound very discouraged and negative but I am not. I have great hope.I believe in us!

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I don't think it's that difficult to attain what AOC is suggesting. The first and foremost thing we have to do is change the way we elect our officials and make it illegal for money to be the most important way to get to that people. I am not against money I am against politicians being paid to lie.

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That sounds wonderful to me. It gives me hope. Humanity needs help, for sure.

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YES. Brilliant, as always, Michael, and succinct. It's all right here. I'm an AOC fan, too, and only wish to see you both out front all the time.

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As always, both you and AOC are spot on and speaking truth to power. But, again as always, let us remember this “republic” was NOT designed to be a democracy, in which the person with the most votes wins. Period. Stop. It was designed for sexist, misogynist, white, male enslavers. Regrettably, we are still in that primitive stage. And, as much as I love and admire Leonard Cohen, he’s wrong about this one: Democracy is NOT coming to the USA, unless we the people bring it with us.

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Really? Economic Democracy? Don’t we have enough to worry about considering that the MSM once again is forgetting the lessons from 2015-16? We had a madman occupy the airwaves last night for 80 minutes to get what? Ratings?

We need to stick to the only thing that matters. Trump gets back in...

...it’s over.

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I often feel this way too, Marty. It's hard work shouldering open the door to hope - even just a crack, for our own mental health's sake. Something that has helped me a lot since 2017 is finding out that money/power concentration is a human made money creation system. It's flaws are known and so are the elements of a sane, trustworthy money system that would make healing possible. www.monetaryalliance.org

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May 12, 2023·edited May 13, 2023

Here is $140 Trillion for US - <http://uswealthclock.com> US Wealth Clock - We are *not* in Debt!

I've sent this to you before, Michael, here it is again. No extra charge. Sources cited on the one page web site above. Is there a taboo? I didn't get the memo, but it sure seems like it.

Renters pay wealth tax. Renters pay *all* of the property tax of their landlords -- but they do not get the deduction. They should. Retroactively. Homeowners pay wealth tax, in our case mostly on the bank's wealth. We get the deduction, our tax is not over the limit the Rs corruptly imposed.

The wealthiest people do not pay wealth tax, in any sane comparison!

The top 10% hold about $90 Trillion, net. Net. We pay 1.3% 1.3% on $90 Trillion would be well over $1 Trillion to the Treasury. Per year.

That would come from pure parity, equality and equity. Change nothing -- just demand fairness --change everything. That said, the tax should probably be measurably progressive.

There is more. Thanks for all you do, and have done, and how -- b.rad

ps I have sent dozens, maybe more than 100 letters and post cards. I have talked one on one with the excellent Senators Merkley and Wyden, and Professor Reich. Nada. Apoplectic. Quietly.

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ps Trillions may seem at odds with the theme of your essay, but that is not my view.

We are all in this together. We, capital W, have plenty of wealth to create prosperity for just about everyone, if we only will apply it. We are so close. There is a lot of work to do. Look around, you know it's true, you think it every time you get out. Employ people to do it.

In my assessment, we each have one vote -- if we can keep it. We therefore each have exactly one, and only one, share in this federal enterprise, the USofA. That will be labeled 'socialism' immediately by many, but I maintain it is profoundly 'capitalist.' And that illustrates that labels are of limited use, what matters is law, and how that law guides the people, and how life and law are actually practiced. -- b.rad

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It does not necessarily follow that the non reply means that the ideas aren't taken in.

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True, thanks for the encouragement, but . . .

. . . I do not see our wealth referenced in any discussions or shrieks about our debt . . . it’s maddening. And I mean, *not a single time.*

A reasonable person can only infer that we are in the hole, that we are in net debt — after all, all they talk about is our debt, that must be the whole story.

We are talking about $140T vs ($31T)

140 >> 31

Have you seen such, any talk at all about our wealth? — b.rad

ps for advanced credit, these are actually separate books. The USA is solvent, the federal entity, by itself, in any sane accounting.

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Remember that they will say anything, much of it false, to advertise their point of view. Trump's tax cut for the richest people and corporations contributed the most to our debt. If it were repealed, we'd cut our debt enormously. If the tiniest % of the very richest paid a tiny amount, the same would be true. Elizabeth Warren spelled all of this out a number of time over the past years--what she explained is still true. We need more Democrats elected in the House And the Senate. We now know without a doubt that Manchin and Sinema are voting in favor of their own wealth, not the well-being of the people they represent,

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Yes to many points . . .

But the excellent and inspiring Senator Warren has not said what our wealth is. ( has she? )

Regular citizens, in my one on one surveys, think the rich have billions, but we have trillions in debt.

Collectively the top 10% have $90 Trillion — that the Fed has found, anyway.

Professor Reich’s free lectures on wealth and poverty make many profound points - but he still hasn’t showed our wealth. I met him, I asked him to, he hasn’t.

He and Bernie keep saying that the top few billionaires have more than the bottom 50%. The Fed says the bottom 50% have $4 Trillion, far more than the top 10 billionaires — this is important to me, because it shows that the billionaires are not the boss of the poorest, even in money.

The tax cuts that matter most go back to Kennedy, and Reagan, wouldn’t you say?

We need progressive high marginal tax rates on income, so the rich don’t just take the easy money and run. That’s now. We need for the richest to create lasting value, and make their money from capital appreciation — that’s what high marginal income tax rates do, better than any other method, in my assessment.

And regular people ought to want the IRS to be strong and fair, and effective, but that’s not what we hear from R voters.

The President has said that an effective IRS should find hundreds of billions per year, and that has been funded, if I heard both of those points correctly. Under attack by the treason caucus, of course.

running at the keyboard, thanks for your thoughts and points — b.rad

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Thank you so much, Michael, for your moving and humane posts! This is one of my favorites.

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I completely agree. In my opinion the first step in the right direction is to remove money as an incentive to run for office. Candidates by law must use only public money to run for office. Each candidate should be given the same amount of money. The fec should collect receipts from each candidate as they spend the money allotted to them. When it’s gone, there’s no more.

Campaign donations are bribes...period. Since the Citizens United decision our government has steadily become more corrupt. The Republican Party

is thoroughly corrupt, the Supreme Court is corrupt

and 50% of the fec (the Repub.members) have turned a blind eye to foreign money donations from Russia, so they are also corrupt. Our healthcare system and pharmaceutical industry are also corrupt. The oil and gas industry has long been corrupt. Republicans are now working to destroy our public school system as well. The way I see it is, we are on the brink of losing what’s left of our democracy.

I have no idea why honest, middle class people vote

for republicans unless they are racists, criminals or mentally impaired. The gop goal is as plain as it can be.Their intent is to destroy our government and permanently rig it in favor of the wealthy and corporations. But that can’t be done until they usher in a fascist regime that will systematically rob every American and deplete our Treasury for their own personal gain. The current crop of House republicans are so dumb they have no idea they will be fleeced along with everyone else. If you’ve seen the movie “Idiocracy,” you know what I’m talking

about.

In summary: We need legislation ready to go should

enough people come to their senses and give Dems a majority in both the House & Senate. The legislation would make campaign contributions a felony. Next, if Biden is still president it’s imperative to add 4 more justices to the Supreme Court asap.

Former Harvard Law professor Emeritus Lawrence Tribe, former retired U.S. District judge Gertner and Univ. of Pennsylvania Law professor Kermit Roosevelt III all served on the Biden Commission to study the Supreme Court. Gertner & Tribe wrote after the commission issued its report and disbanded, “We are on a one-way trip from a slightly defective …democracy toward a system in which the few corruptly govern the many.” And, “The most important issue is the legitimacy of what our nation is becoming. *Expanding the Court to combat it is a risk worth taking.” Prof. Kermit Roosevelt wrote,

“I Spent 7 Months Studying Supreme Court Reform. We Need to Pack the Court Now.”

In case you aren’t convinced about adding 4 justices

to the Supreme Court, the current corrupt,

conservative majority have already seriously undermined the Separation of Church and State in decisions re two different cases. For anyone who hasn’t realized it, or just not thought about it for awhile, religion is a dandy tool to use for the purpose of oppressing a population.

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"no idea why honest, middle class people vote for republicans unless they are racists, criminals or mentally impaired"...They believe the ads that are paid for by the dark money and excessive donations (BRIBES). Many people believe these damning ads, and it costs more money to correct them.

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Yes there are actually people yet claiming that trump will save us from a corrupt deep state. Some disrupter, putting foxes in charge of cabinet hen houses.

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Susan your message resonates for me. Pretty sure solution can only come from outside the Dem/Rep merry-go-round. Humans in both parties want to come out of this dark age. We need to grieve and encourage ourselves IMO. Something that has helped me a lot since 2017 is finding out that money/power concentration results from a human made money creation system. It's flaws are known, and so are the elements of a sane, trustworthy money system that would make healing possible. www.monetaryalliance.org

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Just around the corner,

There's a rainbow in the sky.

So let's have another cup of coffee

And let's have another piece o' pie!

Trouble's just a bubble,

And the clouds will soon roll by'

So let's have another cup of coffee

And let's have another piece o' pie!

Let a smile be your umbrella,

For it's just an April show'r.

Even John D. Rockefeller

Is looking for a silver lining.

Mister Herbert Hoover

says that now's the time to buy.

So let's have another cup of coffee

And let's have another piece o' pie!

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