Happy Fathers Day! We've Got Some Wood To Chuck

Via Global Macro Monitor,

The last words my father spoke to me before he died in 1996 was, [“Gregor], somebody is going to have to do something to help the poor.”

Fast forward to 2017.   Never has the wealth gap in America been so wide.  This creates the initial conditions for a very uncertain and potentially unstable and explosive political and economic future.

I just woke up, for example, to see these two articles juxatposed on my news aggregator.

Why does America have so many hungry kids? – CNN

Summer in the Hamptons: Oysters, Rosé, and Helicopter Noise?  – WSJ

One article is about how 13 million American children go to bed hungry every night and the other is about the 1 percenters, who are now taking helicopters to their Hampton summer homes to avoid traffic.   What in the hell is happening to our country?

Average wealth has increased over the past 50 years, but it has not grown equally for all groups. Between 1963 and 2013, families near the bottom of the wealth distribution (those at the 10th percentile) went from having no wealth on average to being about $2,000 in debt, those in the middle roughly doubled their wealth—mostly between 1963 and 1983, families near the top (at the 90th percentile) saw their wealth quadruple, and the wealth of those at the 99th percentile—in other words, those wealthier than 99 percent of all families—grew sixfold.  Urban Institute

The current data is much worse as the above doesn’t take into account the massive runup in asset prices over the past 3 1/2 years.

Philanthropic 1-Percenters, But……..

I know many 1 percenters who are great and generous people and give so much in an effort reduce poverty.   Paul Tudor Jones’ Robin Hood Foundation, for example, is God’s work.    Though they make a difference in many individual lives, these good works can only go so far and only make just a small dent in the problem of our vanishing middle class and increasing American poverty rate.

It’s the policies, Stupid!

The kumbaya moment Congress is now experiencing after the shooting of its Republican congressional members last week now needs to be translated into action.

Policy changes are imperative if we are going to really — first, we must decide if we want to — make a change.   It’s time to move away from the ugly and tired dialectic of “tax cuts for the rich and government help for the poor.”   Everything must change.

Creative public policy and a change of thinking are the only hope, comrades.

Here is one example,

The United States exports more food than any other country in the world. So why do families with children have trouble getting enough food in such a prosperous nation?


“The non-politcal answer, to me, is greed and government,” Stallings said.


“There’s too many government health restrictions that force restaurants to throw away food” instead of donating it to the needy. “It’s also greed: We’re not helping our neighbors.”   -Bryan Stallings,  CNN

Wow!  We trash 40 percent of the food we produce.

Lessons From The Godfather

Special interests will surely stand in the way of the much needed new policy thinking/making, including from reforming education to allowing restaurants to donate their food to the needy, for example.   So how do we deal with them?

Take a lesson from the Godfather and mayor of Chicago, Rahm Emanuel, when he was Chief of Staff for President Obama and negotiating the bailout of the auto companies.   Some in the bailout group raised concerns about pushback from the United Auto Workers.

To which the Godfather replied,

F$*K the UAW  – Rahm Emanuel 

To which we say,

F$*K the Special Interests   – Global Macro Monitor

My God, we are talking about hungry children, for Pete’s sake.


Common_Law algol_dog Sun, 06/18/2017 - 16:03 Permalink

All this is exacerbated by constant 24/7 365 irradiation. There's 100's of independent peer reviewed human studies showing FCC allowed exposure levels cause neurological changes and cancer. It's a very interesting subject.http://www.bioinitiative.org/ (Research consortium)http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0891061815000599.  (EMFs produce widespread neuropsychiatric effects including depression)https://youtu.be/FttrOK1ec4Q.  (Documentary)https://youtu.be/yf_EdKxfDiY (logical conclusion) 

In reply to by algol_dog

Hal n back Common_Law Sun, 06/18/2017 - 16:49 Permalink

Let's be politically incorrect.Aside from Chicagos problems with murders, whats behnd it?Black women of home several kids from several fathers, partly becuase the more kids you have the more welfare you get. In fact if you can work out a premature delivery, the welfare goes up.There is no future for these kids, no real parenting etc. No money in the house but druges and booze.Exclude the big city data of these issues and the poverty numbers decline significantly.So whats the solution. I do not know -but I am not aid good money to find out. We have government workers and elected leaders getting great salaries early great retirement double dipping and then basically free healthcare. If you are in Congress you do even better.Our elected leaders, for the most part was we know don't give a shit. They have lucrative careers where until recently people kissed their butts to be near them.who is to blame  

In reply to by Common_Law

I am Jobe Sun, 06/18/2017 - 15:49 Permalink

CONsume dammit. Fathers Day, Mothers Day, Christmas, Valentines Day, your Masters demand you CONsume be obese and watch NETFLIX as much as possible. 

VWAndy chunga Sun, 06/18/2017 - 16:22 Permalink

 That would be nice and all. But it sure would make my day if everbody gave one good yank on pulling thier heads out of the collective ass. Take all your wants and desiers you have for yourselves and toss them right out the window. What do you want for others?  See if you can get around your wants. I call it the good dads paradox.

In reply to by chunga

equity_momo (not verified) Sun, 06/18/2017 - 15:53 Permalink

Its the Central Banks stupid.Next question. -and Happy Fathers Day Dads , especially to those paying alimony. Chin up.

max2205 Sun, 06/18/2017 - 15:58 Permalink

No its called having a good paying job and being motivated to get a better paying job then another then another..  90% of workers are fucking lazy getting 2% or 3% over 20 years if they don't get laid off a couple of times.  

Bernie Madolf Sun, 06/18/2017 - 16:39 Permalink

Wait what??

The UAW got a golden parachute and contract law was disregarded to give a huge handout to guarantee blue voting. The GM bailout was heavily in favor of the corrupt Union mafia.

I call BS on the last part.

And Emanuel is a fing worthless corrupt douche bag

SeaMonkeys Sun, 06/18/2017 - 16:51 Permalink

It seems to me that income for average wage earners must decrease going forward. Technology is decreasing the cost of production to such a degree that labor is slowly becoming more and more obsolete, plus outsourcing of course. Capturing added value thru wages is 20th century. The new labor pool is called the "precariate." Part time everywhere. No benefits, no health coverage. Obamacare and/or its GOP replacement are just scams to enrich corporate interests.Americans have been so afraid of losing whatever income they can cobble together. We as a country have been living under increasing austerity since the 80's. Health care doesn't exist as an industry in America. Health insurance is what we have.Insurance should be removed from healthcare altogether. This reduction in the monthly bills would go a long way towards making up for the loss of income for the average American.A libertarian solution like Direct Primary Care, which was a featured double interview on Max Keiser's show a few weeks ago would be a start.http://unorthodoc.comI'm sure Charles Hugh Smith has great ideas for libertarian solutions. Or going in the opposite direction, a national health system, with no middle man insurance, like the U.K. had until recently would be fine too. The GOP will tell you that the push against the "freedom of the markets" is anti-American. The lying Democrats will say that the GOP is too strong, that America is not Denmark, blah, blah, blah. The Democrats rely on the scare tactics of the GOP to tell the Democrat base that they are not strong enough to battle the mean Republicans. Both parties are playing the good cop/bad cop scenario and making fools of all Americans.With the healthcare monthly bills under control, Americans would be able to breath a little easier and start taking risks in their work lives. This translates into some people innovating and becoming more productive-solving problems and making money instead of worrying about losing the bullshit jobs they cobble together to avoid poverty.Decrease rent seeking in the U.S., lower the cost of living as a result, cover health care in the process, and free up the American population to solve problems without the control of big government or corporations. 

Xena fobe Sun, 06/18/2017 - 17:30 Permalink

All that money going to food stamps and children are going hungry?  The same children who are developing type 2 diabetes and high chilesterol?  The kids so out of shape, they don't qualify for the military?  I have never seen one myself.  But suppose 25 million do exist.How do you feed 25 million kids left over restaurant food?  Kids gather in the alley at closing time to see if the restaurant had a slow night? Like stray cats at the wharf?  Yeah that will solve everything.

Xena fobe Sun, 06/18/2017 - 17:50 Permalink

If there are hungry kids, they are American kids from taxpaying families.  The immigrant welfare anchor babies are fat enough to be used as real anchors.Maybe if the welfare mamas quit trading EBT cards for crack.  Maybe we should stop paying welfare mamas to breed. 

Shpedly Xena fobe Sun, 06/18/2017 - 19:17 Permalink

Yup. I see it here in Kentucky. Go to a Walmart in the Hispanic area and even the Mexican toddlers are grossly overweight. The older ones are also the most unruly kids in the store and running apeshit while the parents are oblivious. Never have I seen one corrected by the parents. The only thing I can surmise is, the parents have such a history of hardship, they are going to give the kids anything they want now that their in USA.

In reply to by Xena fobe

Shpedly Xena fobe Sun, 06/18/2017 - 19:29 Permalink

I have a number of grade school teacher friends. They've told me repeatedly that there are indeed many kids that come to school hungry. Hungry to the point that they can't concentrate in class. Also that their free lunch is probably the best meal the kid will get in a day. Most of the teachers I know will pay out of pocket to give these kids a snack bar in the morning to get them going. Taxpayer parents? No frigging way. These kids parents are either low income or no income and don't pay a dime in taxes. The parents are predominantly white drug addeled fuck ups.

In reply to by Xena fobe

bloofer Sun, 06/18/2017 - 17:44 Permalink

You could solve most of our problems of unemployment, hunger, and homelessnes by encouraging an economy in which at least 50% of the population were family farmers--by which I mean family farmers who are freeholders in the land. Some ways to encourage (or allow) this would be to do away with agricultural subsidies, thus lowering the cost of land, and doing away with the zoning and building codes that make it unaffordable to build, and doing away with restrictions on the sale of agricultural products. I.e., if you are a small farmer, you should be able to sell raw milk and dairy products, meats, and home canned goods without restriction. While we're at it, we should close down the CAFOs, the big dairy industry, and corporate agriculture agriculture in general, and confiscate their land and other assets, and arrest their CEOs for genocide, for selling filthy, adulterated, and nutrient-stripped products.

Shpedly Sun, 06/18/2017 - 18:21 Permalink

Happy Father's day all. Shucked 120 oysters by noon. Steamed 10 pounds of mussels and 10 pounds of clams. I'm so done, I'm not worrying about the world's problems till tomorrow.

Arrest Hillary Sun, 06/18/2017 - 18:30 Permalink

This article is inappropriate for Father''s Day .... you have got to be a puritanical, liberal asshole .... to dump this shit on fathers who deserve a day of love ?

strickler Sun, 06/18/2017 - 18:37 Permalink

I call BS on the premise of the story.  There are not 13 million children going to bed hungry every night..These bullshit statistics come from special interests that are vested in promoting government action..They take polls where they ask questions like "are you ever hungry?". People think "well yes just before lunch yesterday I was starving" and they answer "yes".  Then, the special/vested interest group puts out a study on hunger in America and promote the idea that people really are starving..Meanwhile, other groups push the narrative that there is an obesity opedemic among poor children..So which is it?  Are they starving or fat?  And don't you dare pivot to malnourishement and food desert arguments.  Those are more bullshit.

mary mary Sun, 06/18/2017 - 19:03 Permalink

Author didn't even sign his name to this bullsh*t article.13 million crack-babies whose parents are cashing in on every form of Welfare and then trading it all in for the Cadillac payment and the Drug of the Month.Most 1-percenters are getting rich on one form of government contract or another.  The correct name for that is Fascism.  Fascists have ALWAYS pretended to be generous.  Nothing different today.

decentraliseds… (not verified) Sun, 06/18/2017 - 23:39 Permalink

 Why waste time on this alligator when the swamp’s most critical economic and political problems revolve around the hegemony of a global corporate cartel, which is headquartered in the US because this is where their dominant military force resides. The US Constitution is therefore the “kingpin” of an all-inclusive global financial empire. These fictitious entities now own the USA and command its military infrastructure by virtue of the Federal Reserve Corporation, regulatory capture, MSM propaganda, and congressional lobbying. The Founders had to fight a bloody Revolutionary War to win our right to incorporate as a nation – the USA. But then, for whatever reason, our Founders granted the greediest businessmen among them unrestricted corporate charters with enough potential capital & power to compete with the individual states, smaller sovereign nations, and eventually to buy out the USA itself. The only way The People can regain our sovereignty as a constitutional republic now is to severely curtail the privileges of any corporation doing business here. To remain sovereign we have to stop granting corporate charters to just any “suit” that comes along without fulfilling a defined social value in return. The "Divine Right Of Kings” should not apply to fictitious entities just because they are “Too Big To Fail”. We can't afford to privatize our Treasury to transnational banks anymore. Government must be held responsible only to the electorate, not fictitious entities; and banks must be held responsible to the government if we are ever to restore sanity, much less prosperity, to the world. It was a loophole in our Constitution that allowed corporate charters to be so easily obtained that a swamp of corruption inevitably flooded our entire economic system. It is a swamp that can't be drained at this point because the Constitution doesn’t provide a drain. This 28th amendment is intended to install that drain so Congress can pull the plug ASAP. As a matter of political practicality we must rely on the Article 5 option to do this, for which the electorate will need overwhelming consensus beforehand. Seriously; an Article 5 Constitutional Convention is rapidly becoming our only sensible option. This is what I think it will take to save the world; and nobody gets hurt: 28th Amendment: Corporations are not persons in any sense of the word and shall be granted only those rights and privileges that Congress deems necessary for the well-being of the People. Congress shall provide legislation defining the terms and conditions of corporate charters according to their purpose; which shall include, but are not limited to: 1, prohibitions against any corporation; a, owning another corporation; b, becoming economically indispensable or monopolistic; or c, otherwise distorting the general economy; 2, prohibitions against any form of interference in the affairs of; a, government, b, education, c, news media; or d, healthcare, and 3, provisions for; a, the auditing of standardized, current, and transparent account books; b, the establishment of state and municipal banking; and c, civil and criminal penalties to be suffered by corporate executives for violation of the terms of a corporate charter.