Neoliberal News of the Day: July 15th, 2010

Just a few little neoliberal updates today…

1. Obama’s OMB Pick Oversaw Citigroup Unit That Shorted Housing Market – “President Barack Obama’s choice to lead the White House budget office oversaw a Citigroup unit that profited off the housing collapse and financial crisis by investing in a hedge fund king who correctly “predicted” the eventual subprime meltdown and now finds himself involved in the center of the U.S. government’s fraud case against Goldman Sachs.”

2. Why We Can’t Rely on Foreign Consumers to Rescue American Jobs, and Why Today’s “Jobs for America Summit” Is a Bad Joke – “Today (Wednesday), leaders of big business are meeting with the President and Vice President (along with former President Bill Clinton) to urge that the White House push stalled trade-opening agreements with South Korea, Panama, and Columbia… Jobs for America Summit? These executives don’t care about American jobs. They care about their own bottom lines. That’s what they’re paid to care about.”  Robert Reich

3. Chamber Of Commerce’s Jobs Suggestions: Cut Taxes And Social Security, Privatize Roads, Drill Offshore, Log National Forests – “The U.S. Chamber of Commerce sent the White House an “open letter” laying out a proposed roadmap to economic recovery… The Chamber’s four-page letter offers a variety of suggestions for job creation… ideas include deregulation of business, tax cuts for the wealthy, free trade agreements, a reduced corporate income tax, expanded offshore drilling and logging in national forests, the privatization of waterways and roads, extend Bush-era tax cuts in full and provide tax breaks for companies that move jobs overseas” , the “modernization” of Social Security and Medicare (sell them off to Wall Street), and “Incentives and legal surety for investment in clean coal technologies, carbon capture systems, and massive expansion of nuclear power…” . “The political organization also wants control of public resources. “If America’s transportation and water infrastructure, for instance, was fully open to private investment, the $180 billion available today in private capital could generate more than 1.5 million jobs over 10 years”  Ryan Grim

4. Companies pile up cash but remain hesitant to add jobs – “Nonfinancial companies are sitting on $1.8 trillion in cash, roughly one-quarter more than at the beginning of the recession…. Yet all the good news from big business hasn’t translated into much promise for jobless Americans, leading many to wonder: If corporations are sitting on so much money, why aren’t they hiring more workers?” ” White House officials also choreographed a competing set of images for Obama on Wednesday, having him meet separately with famed investor Warren Buffett and, later, with Bill Clinton as well as the chief executives of Bank of America and Honeywell.” Jia Yang

5. Collapse in Living Standards in America: More Poverty By Any Measure – “More than 15 million Americans are unemployed, homelessness has increased by 50 percent in some cities, and 38 million people are receiving food stamps, more than at any time in the program’s almost 50-year history…

The definitive statement of the concrete policies advocated by neoliberalism is often taken to be John Williamson’s “Washington Consensus“, a list of policy proposals that appeared to have gained consensus approval among the Washington-based international economic organizations (like the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank). Williamson’s list included ten points:

definitions:  NEOLIBERALISM  – Privatization of state enterprises, Deregulation – abolition of regulations that impede market entry or restrict competition, Tax reform– broadening the tax base (except for big business and the wealthy), Liberalization of the “capital account” of the balance of payments (selling off American assets to foreign investors), Fiscal policy Governments should not run large deficits (war on the deficits only with regard to the Social Safety Net… war funding and bailouts are fine), Redirection of public spending from subsidies (redirect public coffer spending to privately owned for-profit institutions which will operate public services without any oversight ie: education, police, prisons, fire departments, public works like water, parks services, even certain branches of government and in the end, even the courts.)

Neoliberal Dream Legislation Submitted by Obama Regime – The Privatization of All Public Housing in America

by Scott Creighton

A few months ago I cursed a hero of mine, Dennis Kucinich. He had shifted his position on the corrosive Obamacare bill and signed on to support it just at a time when it could have been defeated. In his pathetic excuse for and explanation he said he wanted to help support President Obama’s domestic agenda.  Well here it is, Mr. Kucinich.  Here is what you wanted to support.

The same week the Obama administration dropped its investigation into AIG, they submitted plans to privatize America’s entire public housing program which will enrich the banks and developers in ways we can’t even begin to measure while leaving the poor and the working poor at their mercy.

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